Belfast Telegraph

Louis Van Gaal backs keeper Sergio Romero as he berates side's defending after Swansea defeat

By Robert Jones

Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal refused to blame Sergio Romero for his side's 2-1 defeat at Swansea.

The Argentina goalkeeper might have done better for both Swansea goals as Garry Monk's side staged a successful Barclays Premier League comeback against United at the Liberty Stadium for the second successive season.

Romero was beaten by Andre Ayew's downward header just after the hour mark before allowing Bafetimbi Gomis' shot to squirm past him at the near post five minutes later.

But with doubts persisting over the future of David de Gea, United's player of the season last year, in the final hours of the transfer window amid strong interest from Real Madrid, Van Gaal defended Romero after his side's first defeat of the season.

"You can write everything you want," he said when asked about Romero's performance.

"What I always say is defending starts in front and not only in the last line.

"You can always analyse errors but I don't think that is a good way. You have to see the way the team is defending as a team and then I know what errors has been made.

"At the end, of course, the pressure for the last defender or goalkeeper is always higher.

"I don't agree when you only say the goalkeeper was not so good."

Van Gaal insisted he did not did know what the future holds for De Gea before the Spanish transfer window closes at midnight on Monday - 18 hours before the English window shuts on Tuesday.

"We have to wait and see but I don't want to interfere," he said.

"As a manager we have divided our tasks and the task is for Ed Woodward (United chief executive) and not for me."

On the defeat, van Gaal added: "There is a lot of frustration but more disappointment. We were the dominant team for 85 minutes but we lost it in five minutes. In five minutes Swansea changed their shape and scored two goals. It is a big lesson for us."

Swansea's win was the third time their manager Garry Monk has got the better of Van Gaal in the last 12 months and victory moved the Welsh club above United into the top four.

"I don't think anyone can grumble with that result with the way we applied ourselves," he said.

Man United's Michael Carrick has been recalled to the England squad for Euro qualifiers against San Marino and Switzerland.

England squad: Joe Hart (Manchester City), Jack Butland (Stoke), Tom Heaton (Burnley); Nathaniel Clyne (Liverpool), Luke Shaw (Manchester United), Kieran Gibbs (Arsenal), Gary Cahill (Chelsea), Chris Smalling (Manchester United), John Stones (Everton), Phil Jagielka (Everton); Michael Carrick (Manchester Utd), James Milner (Liverpool), Ross Barkley (Everton), Jonjo Shelvey (Swansea City), Ryan Mason (Tottenham), Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (Arsenal), Fabien Delph (Manchester City); Raheem Sterling (Manchester City), Wayne Rooney (Manchester Utd), Harry Kane (Tottenham), Jamie Vardy (Leicester), Theo Walcott (Arsenal)

Belfast Telegraph


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