“We played well. We tried to get a good result, but a moment of quality decided the match”, he said.
However, John still has doubts about United’s form despite three wins in a row in all competitions.
“We have to be patient but we also need to move the ball more quickly”. The win now means United are level with their derby rivals on points but sit one place behind them thanks to City’s superior goal difference.
A fourth successive victory was ground out on Wednesday as Van Gaal s side beat Watford 1-0, moving them to within reach of the Premier League s top four as they prepare to visit West Bromwich Albion on Sunday.
United have been forced to blood youngsters to patch up their injury-hit side, but Van Gaal appears happy with the situation that his team and former players find themselves in. “A title is always more than fourth position but the Champions League is our aim and that is why the Europa League and fourth in the table are important”. If you’d told me 15 years ago in Spain that I was going to be captain of Manchester United, I would say it is nearly impossible.
“The scrutiny is there at Manchester United – I experienced that under Sir Alex Ferguson and David Moyes, that’s just what it is at that club”, said the Scotsman.
The 18-year-old Manchester United striker has been impressive since breaking into the first team, scoring four goals in three matches.
Instead, Van Gaal placed his trust in the full-back duo, who have repaid their manager’s faith. “I think that shall also accelerate the recoveries of the players”.
It’s how Wayne Rooney was given his chance and he hasn’t stopped since that day, and in Marcus Rashford you can see that too.
“We are Manchester United, we don’t give up and we have to keep going until the end (in the race for Champions League qualification)”.
“(Marouane) Fellaini and (Antonio) Valencia are the first ones to come back, I think, except of course Martial, Smalling and Darmian”, the Dutchman said. “We have to improve that against opponents like West Brom, because that is the only way you can score”.
“However, Van Gaal was quick to reject that notion, telling reporters: “[The young players] want to prove and they want to show to the world, to the manager, to everybody, that they are the best, so they always give spirit to a team.