Matt Le Tissier has blamed Louis Van Gaal’s tactics for the dip in form of Wayne Rooney this term.The Southampton legend believes that Rooney is struggling to express himself in Van Gaal’s rigid system which favours the results over the style of play.
Manchester United sit comfortably in third place in the Premier League, one point off the top. They also need a win in the final game of the Champions League group stage against Wolfsburg to go into the next round. Le Tissier admitted that Rooney is being badly affected by the system and tactics from Van Gaal which has led to his worst start of a season in his Manchester United career.
Rooney not able to flourish under Van Gaal’s philosophy
Van Gaal has been criticised heavily for his defensive tactics and emphasis on controlling the game rather than going all guns blazing in the game. Le Tissier believes that this approach has led to Rooney’s poor form where he has scored only 2 goals in the league and recorded zero assists. He further added "Rooney is probably suffering a bit from United having changed their emphasis from we will win every game because we've got the best players to one that says we're not going to lose first and foremost.”
The Sky Sports pundit also insisted that this more than a dip in form for the Manchester United captain.He labelled Rooney’s season till now as “the longest slump we've seen. He has had dips in form before but I don't remember him having ever struggled for this long.”
Results are more important than the style of play since Sir Alex’s departure
Manchester United suffered after the departure of Sir Alex Ferguson as they finished seventh the next season. Van Gaal came in and steadied the ship by bringing United back in the top four last term and achieving his aim to keep the club there this term too. Le Tissier also admitted that “United are used to winning with more swagger and style but at the end of the day if they finish in the top four or even win the title, nobody looks back and says they were boring.”
The former Southampton player further added that "this season is more about making sure they're in the top four again given where they've been since Sir Alex Ferguson left the club." United gear up to host West Ham United this weekend as they look to keep things tight for the first spot.