Van Gaal: I don’t want to talk about leaving

Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal was in a bullish mood when quizzed over his future, following Saturday’s 2-1 victory over Crystal Palace in the FA Cup final.

The former Netherlands boss has had to contend with constant speculation over his future in recent months, and the rumour mill has been awash with reports suggesting the Red Devils are lining up former Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho as his replacement.

Some press outlets in England even went so far as to suggest the club would announce Mourinho a few hours after the FA Cup.

When asked whether he expected to be at the Old Trafford helm next season, Van Gaal told reporters: “I show you the cup and don’t discuss it with my friends in the media, who already sacked me six months ago.

“Which manager can do that? You have followed the board? Haha. I don’t want to talk about leaving the club.”

And the Dutch boss heaped praise on his players for collecting silverware in the face of adversity.

He added: “Injuries were there, in the final, like we have seen in the season. But, in spite of that and in spite of having 10 players, we showed a spirit that we have shown on this route to the final.

“Against Sheffield United, we scored in the last minute. We do fight to the end. Against West Ham United, we were behind at home and we scored, still, an equaliser in the last minutes of the game and then we won, away. Against Everton, it was in the last minute.

“When you prove that again, in a final with 10 men against 11, having played on Tuesday with more or less the same team, you can be very proud as Manchester United manager and as a fan.”