One of the very first issues that the 63-year-old Dutchman had to deal with when he inherited the Manchester United job after the Brazil World Cup, was the punishing US tour that David Moyes had agreed for his players. This had been signed off before Moyes left the job in April 2014 and must have been one of the last tasks he undertook as United manager.
Van Gaal went public with his disapproval of the travelling distances and kick-off times that the players had to undertake to accommodate the five matches planned, but rather than take his squad to an alternative continent this time around, an announcement by the club on Tuesday reveals that the Red Devils boss has followed a pretty similar path.
A statement set out Manchester United's plans to play four teams in a league format in games across the US, for the International Champions Cup. United's first pre-season game will be against Mexico's Club America in Seattle, before games against Paris Saint Germain, Barcelona and San Jose Earthquakes.
The game against San Jose will be a particularly poignant affair as it brings together two of George Best's former clubs. Best played 77 games for San Jose in the early 1980s, and the Earthquakes were his third and final club in the US.
Manchester United's group managing director, Richard Arnold, spoke to Sky Sports about the trip and made reference to the audience the club can attract in the US. Arnold said:
"Manchester United has a great history of visiting these US cities, creating memorable experiences for players and fans that date back as far as the 1950s. Tour 2015, presented by Aon, will allow the team to train at some of the best facilities in the world and play in front of thousands of passionate US supporters at first-class stadiums.
"After this month’s Manchester derby broke records to become the most-watched Premier League match in US cable television history, the club is excited to be returning to the United States at a time when the appetite for football is greater than ever."