Louis van Gaal speech: Full transcript from Manchester United awards dinner

The Dutchman delivered an unusual but rousing speech last night

Simon Rice
Wednesday 20 May 2015 08:30 BST
Louis van Gaal at the Manchester United awards dinner
Louis van Gaal at the Manchester United awards dinner

Louis van Gaal stole the show during Manchester United's awards dinner, despite goalkeeper David De Gea picking up the two major awards of the evening.

Having clipped assistant Ryan Giggs around the ear earlier in proceedings, the Dutchman took to the stage to deliver a lengthy, unusual but oddly rousing speech.

Here's what he said...

When you start a season with 10 matches and 13 points and you are a manager of that club, the most world famous club and you play at home and I am also a human being and I have the experience with other clubs, when you have that result you are not very beloved by your fans and I came in the stadium of Old Trafford, 10 matches, 13 points and I came in and I saw by myself how I have to behave myself and then the public are applauding, standing up and I thought how is it possible that the fans are supporting me?

Thanks to that we could continue – not only me, my staff but especially the players because it is not so easy when you are playing in a great club that you have 10 matches,13 points and a new manager who demands in another way than all the other managers.

It's very difficult and with all the injuries of the first part of the season and then we continue with a spirit in the team, unbelievable, and that's the credit of this team, the spirit. We come from I thought in my memory 13th place to third position in the league.

After so bad start. And then we had to believe the players but also the staff that we could end second. I remember the meeting with the players with the captain Wayne Rooney who's saying 'we go for the second position in the league and I said yes. We go for it!'

You remember the game against Arsenal. We were the better team and the best player on the pitch in my opinion makes an error and we lose that game and I forget the meeting. And then you have to remember that we win six games in a row.

And then we go to Chelsea. You remember away game against Chelsea? No, no, no, you have to listen. I ask you to listen. Because at that time we have 50 points and then Rooney sat in the dressing room we go for the second place, he said that. Then six games in a row we win and then we go to Chelsea. Who are the better team then?! It's easy to say that now in this room. I can believe it but it was the truth but we lost. We lost that game but can you imagine when you have 80% ball possession you have 10 big possibilities and they have three, they have three and they win the game.

When we win that game count the numbers of points we could have won because after that we lost three games in a row. But when you see that we have 13 points and Chelsea have 83 points and we could have been champions.

What I want to say to you, we are very close!.

But as a manager I know that if is not counting, if is not counting, we have to produce more. And believe me the players but also the staff but also the organisation like Manchester United shall do their utmost best and why? Because we have the best fans of the world. Thank you for that and I will see you next season again.

Van Gaal left the stage before returning and snatching the microphone...

I want to say something Pay attention to the manager!

Ryan Giggs said to me, and he is always right but in this case particularly right. I have said to you you are the best fans in the world but tonight I was a little bit disappointed and I shall say why.

I have seen a lady who plays the saxophone fantastically. Give her big applause!

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