Louis Van Gaal Reveals His 10-Man Manchester United Shortlist From Time As Manager
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Louis van Gaal has revealed his 10-man transfer shortlist from his time as Manchester United manager - with the club failing to sign a single one.
The Dutchman replaced David Moyes as United manager back in 2014 and wanted to completely rejuvenate the squad.
United still had many of the players who had won the Premier League with Sir Alex Ferguson and van Gaal felt the Red Devils needed a revamp.
He told FourFourTwo that a whole list of world class names were drawn up as targets.
"I wanted Robert Lewandowski, but when this proved difficult I tried to get Gonzalo Higuain instead," the 69-year-old begun.
"Before I had arrived, I also spoke with the board about Neymar. If you are at United, you have to think big. He was also interesting for the club in terms of selling shirts, and I wanted to have quick wingers. For that reason, I also tried to get Sadio Mane and Riyad Mahrez."
United were first linked to Mane in 2015 - one year before he joined Jurgen Klopp's project at Liverpool.
Van Gaal explains that potential midfield targets included Thomas Muller, N'Golo Kante and James Milner - who had played for rivals Manchester City and eventually moved to Liverpool.
"Thomas Muller was on my wish list, too, and in central midfield I wanted N'Golo Kante. I even tried to sign James Milner, who was already quite old but very multifunctional and possessed leadership skills.
"For the defence, I wanted Sergio Ramos and Mats Hummels, because ours wasn't the strongest in building from the back."
Van Gaal spent £150 million in his first transfer window and even broke the club's transfer record to sign Angel Di Maria.
United managed to finish fourth in their first season under 'LVG' but slipped to fifth in their second, resulting in his sacking days after winning the 2016 FA Cup.
He goes on to add that he was never involved in negotiations for players despite his extensive list.
Louis van Gaal: "My wife already had a hunch [that he would get sacked] in December  - she felt that something had changed in the relationship. But I couldn't believe it because we kept having the same kind of conversations as before." #mulive [fourfourtwo]- utdreport (@utdreport) August 24, 2020
"Those were my top targets, but we couldn't get any of them. I don't know why, because as the manager I wasn't involved in any negotiations.
"After I left, players like Mahrez and Kante ended up at Manchester City and Chelsea, while United couldn't get them. I found that very odd."