Van Gaal’s words on striker hint at possible change at United

Tipped to become the next Manchester United boss, Louis van Gaal has praised Robin van Persie's role as Holland captain and admitted they share an ethos.

Louis van Gaal praised striker Robin van Persie following Holland’s 1-1 draw with Ecuador. But he was less candid when it came to the ongoing speculation linking him with the Manchester United manager’s job.

Van Persie scored his side’s goal in the encounter and, in quotes published by ESPN, his international boss could not hide his admiration for the impressive strike.

“He plays very well,” van Gaal said of the front-man. “Now he is coming from a bad injury and he scores a fantastic goal – unbelievable – and he was pressing, so I am happy with him. But he is also a good captain.”

It is that comment that could have Wayne Rooney worried. After all, the United captaincy is up for grabs next season and Rooney was tipped to take the role. But should van Gaal ultimately take the job it seems he may have another candidate in mind.

“Always, you make a player captain when you have more or less the same philosophy, not only about football tactics but also about life,” the 62-year-old added. “So I think that’s very important.

“I believe that van Persie and van Gaal (have) the same philosophy.”

The former Barcelona and Bayern Munich coach refused to be drawn on the stories linking him with United, but it would come as an almighty surprise if his appointment is not announced sooner rather than later.

And if it is, it seems van Persie is set for a very prominent role at a club he was only recently tipped to leave.

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