Belfast Telegraph

Leicester defeat sparked a heated debate at Old Trafford, says RVP

By Paul Hirst

Manchester United held a deep hour-long inquest into their dismal 5-3 defeat to Leicester, Robin van Persie has revealed.

Manager Louis van Gaal was unhappy with his team's performance at the King Power Stadium on Sunday, where they conceded four goals in the last 28 minutes, and told his squad to meet for a detailed debrief 24 hours later.

Van Persie said "confronting" views were exchanged during the meeting, which he feels was beneficial to the squad as they look to improve following their worst start to a Premier League campaign.

Nearly a week on from the capitulation, Van Persie is still at a loss to explain how United failed to win the match, which they led 3-1 thanks to his first goal of the season, and strikes from Angel di Maria and Ander Herrera.

"It shouldn't be possible, but it still happened," Van Persie said ahead of today's home game against West Ham.

"So we have to deal with it. We had a proper look at it the next day.

"Sometimes it was a bit confronting.

"It was a really good meeting as everyone spoke up and shared their feelings.

"It was a long meeting, one hour or something meeting, but we went from there, started again this week and a couple of really good sessions in and everyone feels ready to face West Ham."

Former Ajax and Bayern Munich manager Van Gaal has recorded just one win so far, against relegation candidates QPR.

Defeat to West Ham would raise further questions about Van Gaal's ability to take United back into the Champions League, but Van Persie is sure his fellow Dutchman is the right man to revive the club's fortunes following the failures of David Moyes' reign.

"I think his numbers speak for themselves, he has had success everywhere he has managed," said Van Persie, who captained Holland under Van Gaal at the World Cup.

"And everyone believes in his philosophy as well.

"If you look at the players we have now, the staff, the stadium, and the fans, I am very confident for the future."

Much to Van Gaal's dismay, he has been hit by an injury crisis.

Summer signing Marcos Rojo is United's only fit centre-back and that means Ballyclare youngster Paddy McNair could make his first team debut.

Belfast Telegraph


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