Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal has hinted that he may not make any more signings at the club this summer.
Van Gaal has added Luke Shaw and Ander Herrera to his team ahead of the Premier League season but has stressed his vision is a long term one, not a form of quick fix to compensate for last season.
“I’m not a coach who thinks short term. I am a coach who thinks always in the long term. The way you see Barcelona still playing with six players from my time because I gave a lot of chances to the youth players,” said van Gaal in an interview with the Daily Mail.
“When you see Ajax I had the youngest team to win the Champions League with 17, 18, 19 year-old players.”
Van Gaal also took 16 home grown Eredivisie players to the World Cup with his Netherlands squad, which secured third place, narrowly missing out on a chance to be crowned World Champions.
He’s already hinted that he’s likely to use youth team players far more than in previous seasons at United with Reece James among the youngsters to have impressed on the pre-season tour of the USA.
Sam Johnstone, Tyler Blackett, Michael Keane and Will Keane are also among the youngsters to have been taken to the USA.
James Wilson is also a huge talent and made his first team debut in the Premier League under Ryan Giggs at the back end of last season.
Giggs is someone van Gaal has put a lot of trust in ahead of his first competitive campaign in charge and someone the Dutchman is likely to trust should he tip Wilson to feature in the coming season.
So what’s van Gaal’s theory in terms of trusting the younger players at the club?
“The argument for that is when you use youth players of the club they know the culture of the club and they want to defend that culture and wear that culture and transfer that culture. When you buy a player from outside you have to wait and see and not every player will fulfil your expectation.”
It’s a fair point, especially with the current youngsters who had to watch the success they have grown accustomed to with the first team fall apart around them, placing them under additional pressure last season.
One of the core reasons for Sir Alex Ferguson’s success at United was his ability to build teams over a number of years, backing them up with good signings. The early signs with LvG look promising.