LONDON — Alex Ferguson has backed Louis van Gaal’s decision to overhaul Manchester United’s struggling squad with a major spending spree. Van Gaal was hired to clean up the mess left by David Moyes, whose brief reign as Ferguson’s successor at Old Trafford ended with the club at their lowest ebb for two decades.
United responded by hiring van Gaal and handing the Dutch coach significant funds to breathe new life into the team. Van Gaal splashed out over 150 million pounds (US$240 million) on Angel di Maria, who cost a club record 59 million pounds, Radamel Falcao, Ander Herrera, Marcus Rojo and Luke Shaw. The new signings have helped United into the Premier League’s top four already despite some indifferent performances, and Ferguson, who retired after winning the title in 2013, is in no doubt that fresh faces were needed. Referring to the capture of Di Maria from Real Madrid, he told MUTV: ��When you can identify ability like that for Manchester United, they have the resources to do that – fees I never quite equaled but they needed a big injection this year.�� On the other signings he added: ��Herrera played against us three years ago for Bilbao, he’s a talented young player and we scouted him quite a lot. He’s quite aggressive for a lad who’s not got a great frame. ��I watched Rojo at the World Cup and thought he did well. He’s capable of playing left side or centre back. ��Luke Shaw we tried to get when he was 16. They (Southampton) wouldn’t sell him but they always said we’d be the first to know if he did. He’s a talented boy, good footballer and likes to get forward. ��Daley Blind is a common-sense footballer, a version of Darren Fletcher a few years ago. And Falcao is the one we’re all waiting to see, he’s got fantastic goalscoring ability.��