Van Gaal makes admission after Man United defeat

Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal has admitted that his side lacked confidence during their 1-0 defeat to Southampton at Old Trafford yesterday.

The Red Devils had been coming into a bit of positive form and closed the gap on the top four, but a disappointing performance and result sends the club back to square one.

New Saints striker Charlie Austin netted the winner, which means that United are now five points behind fourth-placed Tottenham.

Van Gaal, who has had pressure mounting on him in recent months due to substandard showings on the pitch, has admitted that his side looked like they lacked confidence.

“I think that, after a row of three victories and a draw in 2016, then you have a lot of confidence,” he told the club’s official website.

“That I didn’t see today. Also, the expectations are very high and the pressure for the players is also high because of that.

“Of course, at half-time, I changed Juan Mata and saw, in the first 15 minutes, we were better and the fans were behind the team and cheering for the team.

“Darmian was injured and then it was gone. It’s a pity we didn’t continue with our momentum.”

The Old Trafford faithful were clearly not amused by the result, with Van Gaal and United under pressure to turn their season around.

United travel to take on Derby County in the FA Cup in their next match, while a home clash with Stoke awaits them in their next Premier League outing.