Manchester United transfer news: Van Gaal set to axe Fellaini, Kagawa, Hernandez and Nani
The new Manchester United boss will present Chief Executive Ed Woodward with a list of unwanted players later this week
Louis van Gaal is a manager with the requisite experience and authoritarian nature to know exactly what he wants and needs out of a disparate bunch of footballers.
Naturally, then, it follows that the new Manchester United boss is fast becoming aware of the players who look unlikely to fit the profile of his side as the start of the Premier League season moves rapidly into view.
Though he had his hands full guiding the overachieving Dutch to a World Cup semi-final, Van Gaal was gathering intelligence about his new charges all the while via his coaches Albert Stuivenberg and Marcel Bout, who were charged with overseeing training at United's Carrington base.
Now, having seen enough of his squad in the flesh during the International Champions Cup from which United emerged victorious, the former Barcelona boss will present a list of the names he does and does not want to keep to Red Devils Chief Executive Ed Woodward later this week.
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"I shall make judgments after this tour," said Van Gaal before United flew home following their 3-1 defeat of Liverpool in the Champions Cup.
"I have let all the players play and I now know more than before the tour.
"Now, also, it is a little bit soon to judge, but in football you have to judge. You have to give the player a chance to make a transfer when I see that his prospects to play are not so high. You have to say it in advance, because it’s too late after August 31. I will tell players after the tour but to them, not to you."
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The names of those the Dutchman is apparently willing to cast off are mostly unsurprising. Marouane Fellaini has not had the chance to change Van Gaal's early prognosis that he is "not a United type of player" - a comment that the manager made to his associates in early July, whilst the Belgian was still in action at the World Cup. United would ideally like to recoup twenty of the £27 million they lavished on the shock-haired midfielder last summer - but so far has his stock fallen that they may have to accept the loan deal on offer from Napoli.
They may have more of a chance of successfully offloading Shinji Kagawa, who is the subject of interest from his former club Borussia Dortmund and Atletico Madrid. The stylish Japan attacking midfielder has been a peripheral figure during his two years in the North West, making just 38 appearances. Van Gaal has a surplus of "number tens", meaning that the silk-footed Kagawa is expendable.
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Javier Hernandez is also surplus to requirements. The Mexico goal-poacher has struggled to command a starting place after becoming a fans' favourite during an enormously successful debut season in 2010/11. The suspicion exists that Hernandez is too one-dimensional to fit into Van Gaal's new system, which places emphasis very much on the collective rather than specialist roles. Van Gaal appeared to confirm this in his comments about the "Little Pea" made after he scored in United's Saturday night 3-1 victory over Real Madrid.
"I think the striker has the biggest chance to score, so that it is not the reason why a player plays,’ said Van Gaal in response to a question about the Mexico striker.
"We are playing as a team and the team scores. I don’t make individual evaluations because we are playing with a team, not individual players."
Nani and Anderson are also likely to be told that they can leave the club - they are perhaps the two least surprising cast-offs. Van Gaal is looking for wing-backs for his new 3-4-1-2 system - and Ashley Young and Antonio Valencia have struck him as more adaptable to defensive roles than the flashy Portugal winger. Juventus, Inter Milan, Valencia and Arsenal all retain an interest in Nani - though his value may be a stumbling-block having signed a new five-year deal last season.
Anderson joined the club at the same time as Nani, in July 2007 and has made 104 appearances during his time at United. But his value has dropped precipitously in recent seasons and the club will struggle to recoup a quarter of the £20 million they paid Porto for his services.
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