Manchester United analysis: Louis van Gaal has same number of points as David Moyes

Despite huge outlay, there appears to have been little improvement at Old Trafford

Click to follow
The Independent Football

At this time last year David Moyes was just a couple of months away from being being axed as manager of Manchester United.

At this very same stage of the season, after 21 matches in the Premier League, the Scot had amassed 37 points - the exact same number as his successor Louis van Gaal has managed.

Yet despite an almost identical record (Moyes' team had managed to score one more goal) there is no suggestion of Van Gaal being treated in the same way. But despite his job not appearing to be under pressure, there are serious questions to be asked about Van Gaal's reign.

During his first summer in charge, Moyes signed only Marouane Fellaini. Van Gaal brought in Ander Herrera, Daley Blind, Luke Shaw, Angel Di Maria, Marcos Rojo and Radamel Falcao.

In the January window, Moyes managed to sign Juan Mata from Chelsea. Van Gaal has signed Victor Vales and has been talking about a willingness to spend much more before the month is out.

Valdes has joined United


Such contrasting success in the transfer market has made the similarity in results all the more startling and the decision to omit Falcao from the squad altogether for the defeat to Southampton seemed nothing short of bizarre.

Radamel Falcao


Manchester United failed to have a single shot on target in the 1-0 loss, something that hasn't happened at Old Trafford for five years. The defeat at home to Southampton was also there first in the Premier League era.

After the match, Van Gaal defended his team: "We didn't create so much but we dominated the game. They came for a draw and they go away with a victory, that is disappointing.

"We played a much better game than Southampton. They were lucky to score out of nothing."

It was not a sentiment many agreed with and the result meant Southampton moved above Manchester United in the league.

There had been talk of a push for the title at Old Trafford, but on recent showings, they will do well to finish in the top-four. Perhaps a finish above seventh place, where the Moyes-era United finished last season, would be enough for Van Gaal - at least he could then claim things have improved.