Manchester United 'scrap transfer plans' due to Louis van Gaal uncertainty

The Dutchman is expected to leave Old Trafford if he fails to guide the Red Devils to the Champions League

Manchester United have shelved their January transfer window plans as uncertainty surrounding Louis van Gaal’s future continues, according to reports.

The Dutchman has enjoyed an upturn in fortunes at Old Trafford in recent weeks, picking up eight points from 12, but rumours persist about his possible dismissal – with outgoing Bayern Munich boss Pep Guardiola continuously linked with the post.

The Daily Mirror suggest the Red Devils hierarchy have slapped Van Gaal with a transfer ban this month to prevent him signing players his prospective replacement may wish to sell on down the line.

This latest development, if true, brings their pursuit of Felipe Anderson, the Lazio attacking midfielder, to a close after months of speculation hinting towards a £35m switch this month.

Van Gaal is expected to be given until the end of the current Premier League season but failure to qualify for the Champions League could prove fatal for his hopes of staying on for the final year of his contract.

Meanwhile, it has been revealed that Gareth Bale has a clause in his contract stipulating former club Tottenham have the first option to sign the Welshman. 

If the La Liga side accepted a bid from any other Premier League club before June 30 2019, Spurs would then have 72 hours to match the offer, in which case Real would have to sell to the north Londoners. 

January Transfer window - completed deals

The clause was revealed in leaked documents this week with the theory that Bale is the most expensive player in the world seemingly being confirmed. Madrid insist the transfer was completed for £70.38m, more than £3m less than what was paid for Cristiano Ronaldo. 

The leaked document, however, suggests they parted with as much as £77.45m in several instalments. 

Speaking this week, Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino said: "I think if we have the option to sign him - why not? He's a great player and a player that can improve our squad."