Van Gaal fears set-piece threat of FC Midtjylland

Angry Louis van Gaal

Manchester United boss Louis van Gaal admits that he is wary of the threat offered by Europa League opponents FC Midtjylland from dead-ball situations.

 

Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal has acknowledged in his Europa League pre-match press conference that his team will be at a disadvantage from set pieces against FC Midtjylland.

 

Van Gaal has taken a weakened 18-man squad to Denmark for the first leg of the last-of-32 tie, with Wayne Rooney a notable absentee after suffering a knee injury which is likely to rule him out of action for at least six weeks.

 

However, the former Netherlands coach has hinted that his biggest worries involve the height of his team, with the likes of Phil Jones and Marouane Fellaini unavailable for Thursday's encounter.

 

It is an area that hindered United against Sunderland last weekend, with both of the goals scored by the Black Cats coming from a dead-ball situation.

 

Van Gaal said: "We don’t have tall players so we know that in advance. Midtjylland are specialised at set-plays. They have scored 48 goals from them, so we will try to organise for that but it’s difficult.

“We hope we can do that but we mustn’t give too many corners or free-kicks away. The early one against Sunderland was not a free-kick. My compatriot van Aanholt went down for nothing and you have to cope with that.”

Tomorrow's game does not represent the first time that Midtjylland have faced English opposition this season, with Jess Thorup's side only securing their place in the competition with a 2-1 aggregate success over Southampton in August.

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