Manchester United Louis van Gaal has come up with a novel excuse for why Manchester United didn't challenge for the title this year. Chelsea have a chance to seal the title this weekend with three games to spare, but van Gaal thinks that United will be better prepared for a tilt at the title next season.
United started off the season in terrible form, and van Gaal is blaming that on their pre-season tour. United spent the preseason on tour in America playing in games against the likes of Real Madrid, Roma, Liverpool and Inter in various US cities. United played their last match in America on the 4th of August, before one further pre-match friendly against Valencia in Old Trafford four days before the start of the Premier League season on the 16th of August.
Van Gaal pins the blame entirely on the travelling and kick off times, hotel locations, the weather and various other logistics from that tour for why Man United aren't closer to the de facto Premier League champions.
With United set to go back to America this summer, how will Van Gaal change things?
I think also the preparation of our season - Manchester United has already adapted to a better preparation.
We shall have two bases in the US [in pre-season] so we are not flying between matches, we are going via bus which is better. The temperature is lower because we are on the other coast to last year.
We have started very badly this year. When you cut out the start we shall equal Chelsea, for example, but we have to start better.
Do you think that United will challenge Chelsea next year?