Manchester United transfer news: Louis van Gaal says '£95m' Radamel Falcao must prove himself just like all the others

Van Gaal also reveals that Robin van Persie is a doubt for this weekend's clash with QPR

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The Independent Online

Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal today gave the impression that he is lukewarm about Radamel Falcao at best but chilly at worst, declaring that “a person of £95 million has to prove himself also.”

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The Dutchman’s observation that “if a player cost £95m or £5,000” was a general point about his creed of meritocracy. But despite his usual prickliness on the subject, he was unable to disguise the fact that Falcao’s performances in training have contributed to the decision to leave him out. “He has to prove himself. We have agreed because of that we have made this deal and everything is clear,” the manager said.

Van Gaal, who assumed management of the player when he was signed for a £6m loan fee on £265,000-a-week wages on transfer deadline day, said that Falcao’s fee and high profile arrival on a personal jet were “not so interesting for a manager.” But “the quality of the training session, the quality in his performances in his matches and to have a game plan,” were what did matter, he insisted.

 “I have already explained it after [Sunday’s home defeat to] Southampton,” Van Gaal said. “If a player cost £95m, or £5,000 it is not any difference for me. It is difficult to understand for you, I believe, because it is the second or third question. A person of £95m has to prove himself also. If I am like that maybe he has less motivation but I have to be like that. For the outside world it is difficult.”

Van Gaal disclosed that Robin van Persie’s ankle injury makes him a doubt for this week’s trip to Queens Park Rangers, though he would not give a clue as to whether he would again select 19-year-old James Wilson, for his superior speed, ahead of Falcao. “You will have to wait and see [if Falcao plays] because if I say that the line-up is known and I make it easy for my opponent, and I don’t want to make it easy,” he said. He rejected suggestions that United may be very active in the transfer.

Falcao1.jpg
Radamel Falcao celebrates his goal against Stoke

“I don’t think we shall be very active because not many payers of a certain level are available,” he said. “I’ve said in this press conference that when we buy a player he has to better than the player we have.”

Asked if he thought his current squad was strong enough to hold down one of the Champions League places, Van Gaal said: “That is our goal and that I have always said. We are at this moment we have played

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