Do Van Gaal's recent comments criticise Moyes, Ferguson or both?

David Moyes Interview - 23/02/2014

Manchester United manager feels he has been left a squad that is not balanced.

Manchester United gave LA Galaxy a pre-season thumping as the visiting side in Pasadena gave Dutch coach Louis van Gaal a 7-0 rout to enjoy as his first match in charge of the dugout.

However, while the manager credited his new team with "beautiful attacks" which resulted in "beautiful goals" he was also swift to point out that he has inherited an unbalanced squad - a clear criticism of the prior regime overseen by David Moyes or even Sir Alex Ferguson.

With Wayne Rooney, Juan Mata, Shinji Kagawa and Adnan Januzaj, United are spoiled for choice when it comes to "number 10s" but van Gaal believes the "selection is not balanced".

Sir Alex Ferguson was criticised for handing over a considerably weakened squad when compared to the strength of his earlier rosters - and this was seen to be a fundamental reason for David Moyes's failure to replicate the success of his predecessor.

Moyes - who oft adopted a 4-2-3-1 set-up - only had two transfer windows to remedy the senior selection, but brought in Marouane Fellaini and Juan Mata.

Against LA Galaxy, van Gaal fielded a 3-5-2 formation with Jonny Evans, Chris Smalling and Phil Jones acting as the bank of three centre backs who were flanked by wing backs Luke Shaw and Antonio Valencia. Summer recruit Ander Herrera added midfield protection to the rearguard.

"We have four number 10s, so the selection is not balanced in my eyes," said van Gaal, as quoted by FIFA, in what could be construed to be a dig at previous managements of the club.

"I have decided to play this system because of the quality of the players. But if we lose, I can change back to another system. We introduced a new system that we have only played two times on the training pitch 11 v 11 but the boys are willing to pick up the information.

"When you want to change a system, you must start at once. We don't have time to prepare for other things. The other system they can play is 4-3-3 and they have played it for many years. I can change back if the system doesn't work. With the quality of the players we have, I can play 4-3-3 with three strikers on the bench, but I want to play with two strikers."

If van Gaal is eager to work with two strikers in his starting XI, could Kagawa become surplus to requirements? How else can the coaching veteran bring balance to the squad?

Considering how light the squad is in terms of quality central defenders, there is an argument that a player like Stefan de Vrij remains a priority signing - but it is unclear whether United are in contact with Feyenoord over the defender's transfer or if the club have cooled their interest.

Register for MANCHESTER UNITED team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch