As Mario Gotze inscribed his name in the history books by scoring the goal that clinched Germany’s first World Cup in 24 years, one wonders how Shinji Kagawa must have felt. The Japanese would have undoubtedly been happy to see his former teammate shine on the biggest stage of them all and perhaps he also thought that he too still has a chance of redemption.
Integral figures to the Dortmund side that won back-to-back titles in 2011 and 2012, neither Gotze nor Kagawa excelled after leaving the Westfalenstadion and while the former has largely atoned his inconsistent form for Bayern Munich by carving himself a spot into Germans hearts, the latter must be hoping that one of the biggest characters of the 2014 World Cup will give him another chance to shine at Old Trafford.
Louis Van Gaal wants his Manchester United to resemble the Holland squad he steered to third place at the World Cup and the Dutchman has expressed his desire for United players to be “singing from the same hymn sheet”.
After a successful World Cup, Van Gaal will officially be unveiled as Manchester United manager this week, before flying out to the US for United’s summer tour – unlike Robin Van Persie, who will miss the North American tour after having been given three weeks off – when the job of rebuilding the squad that collapsed under David Moyes will begin in its earnest.
Adidas will replace Nike as Manchester United’s kit manufacturer from the start of the 2015-16 season, after United clinched a deal with the German company worth a staggering £70m-a-year, more than double the amount United currently pocket from Nike.
The deal, which should be officially announced on Monday afternoon, will bring an end to United’s 13-year long partnership with Nike, much to relief of a lot of fans who have grown increasingly disillusioned with the American manufacturer’s inability to produce a good looking kit for the Reds.
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New Manchester United manager, Louis van Gaal, has failed in his efforts to persuade his number one target to follow him to Old Trafford this summer.
Robben, who we previously reported to be van Gaal’s priority transfer on 21st June, revealed on Dutch television after the 3-0 win over Brazil in Brasilia that Van Gaal had approached him about joining United.
There are reports surfacing via Twitter that a Spanish radio show, Onda Cero, suggest Manchester United may well be about to purchase Angel Di Maria for €60m (£47m).
If the deal went ahead it would break Real Madrid’s highest ever fee received for a player.
“He’s keen to go to Manchester” the reports quote. WHO exactly made the quote is, at present, unknown but according to Football Journalist, Rafael Hernandez (@RafaelH117) “Onda Cero are worth listening to claiming Di Maria to Manchester United is a real possibility.”
With Patrice Evra’s move to Juventus set to be completed before the end of the week, Manchester United find themselves needing a left-back to provide cover for Luke Shaw, given the former Southampton man is currently the only option available in that particular role. However, given Shaw looked poised to be Louis Van Gaal’s first option at left-back, United do not necessarily need an older player to mentor the 19-year-old and could opt for another young prospect.
Here’s five players who could represent a valid alternative to Evra.
Phil Neville and Nicky Butt will discover whether they’re part of Louis Van Gaal’s plans or not over by the end of next week, once the Dutch manager officially takes over at Manchester United after his World Cup campaign with Holland.
Neville returned to Old Trafford last season as part of David Moyes’ coaching staff and continued to work alongside interim manager Ryan Giggs even after Moyes was sacked in April, but with Van Gaal bringing in three new coaches – Frans Hoek, Marcel Bout and Albert Stuivenberg – and Giggs promoted to assistant manager, Neville’s future remains unclear.