Louis van Gaal: Man United aren’t far behind Chelsea

Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal talks up a potential title challenge next season

Louis van Gaal doesn’t believe Manchester United have a big gap to close over the summer in order to launch a Premier League title challenge next season.

The Red Devils are leading the race to finish in the final Champions League spot despite a two-game losing run following defeats by Chelsea and Everton.

The 20-time English champions are currently 15 points behind Premier League leaders Chelsea ahead of their clash against West Bromwich Albion at Old Trafford on Saturday.

Van Gaal, who signed a three-year deal to become the club’s new manager in May 2014, believes United are capable of reeling in Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea next season.

“There is not a big gap, I don’t think so,” Van Gaal told his pre-match media conference.

“You can judge that when the clubs are playing matches against each other. We are very close to the second position. Chelsea are far above the other clubs but that can be different next year.”

The 63-year-old Dutchman added that he believes United would be competing with leaders Chelsea if the Red Devils hadn’t made such a poor start to the season.

“We started very badly this year because when you cut the start of it, I think we equal Chelsea, for example,” Van Gaal added.

“Now we have to start better. We have to make the balance in our selection better, and then we have to perform at the moment it is being asked of.”

Van Gaal has been linked with a move for Borussia Dortmund defender Mats Hummels in recent months.

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