Man United’s Louis van Gaal criticises ‘stupid’ Chris Smalling
The Manchester United manager was unhappy by the way the defender was sent off against Manchester City
Louis van Gaal criticised Chris Smalling for his sending off in the first half of Manchester United’s 1-0 defeat by Manchester City in Sunday’s derby.
The defender was shown a second yellow card just before half-time at The Etihad for a reckless challenge on James Milner.
Sergio Aguero’s 63rd-minute strike proved the difference between the two sides as City recorded their first win four games.
And Van Gaal was less-than-impressed by the defender’s sending-off.
“In a derby you have to be careful – the second yellow card is a stupid yellow card,” Van Gaal told BBC Sport.
“The sending off is not one of those things. As a player you have to control your aggression.
“I didn’t see the first yellow but with the second, you know you already have a yellow, so have to handle it differently. I said that to the players.”
He added: “I don’t think he dealt with it very smartly because then we have 11 against 10 and that’s the most difficult way you can play for 45 minutes.”
The defeat left United ninth in the Premier League table and 13 points behind leaders Chelsea after 10 games.
“We have 13 points out of 10 matches and Chelsea have a lot more, as do Manchester City so we have a problem,” he said.
“We need to improve and prove that we are not close but better. We will improve, that I promise.”