The Red Devils saw their realistic hopes of ending their first season under Van Gaal with a trophy ended by Arsenal after their 2-1 FA Cup loss to the Gunners last week.
United now turn their attentions to finishing as high as possible in the Premier League and securing a route into next season’s Champions League via a top-four finish.
And Van Gaal admits that finishing in the top four spots would feel like winning a trophy in his first season in charge at Old Trafford.
Speaking ahead of United’s Premier League clash with Tottenham at Old Trafford on Sunday, Van Gaal told Sky Sports: “I would have loved to play for the semi-final of the FA Cup. I think we could’ve played for two titles. Nevertheless a Champions League [spot] for us is a title.
“When you lose you have to react. You have to react in a match but on the training ground they have already reacted very well.
“It’s the first match of our rat race with the other teams. It’s your competitors so it’s very important to win.”
United, who are currently fourth in the table, still have to face the likes of Liverpool, Chelsea and Arsenal before the end of the Premier League season.
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