Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal has labelled the Red Devils "lucky" after their 1-0 win over Everton at Old Trafford on Sunday. The Dutch manager believes his team was below par and were fortunate to get the three points, which keeps them alive in the race for a place in the top four of the Premier League.
The 20-times English champions are currently in fifth place, one point behind neighbours Manchester City, with West Ham United two points behind in sixth place. Van Gaal blamed the recently concluded international break for his team's poor showing as they did not have too many days to prepare for the Toffees' visit.
United went ahead through Anthony Martial in the 54th minute, when he converted one of their only two shots on target during the game. Everton were also as poor as they had just one shot on target throughout the 90 minutes but the Dutch manager believes they could have also scored two goals and grabbed the three points.
Overall, the manager is delighted with the win and believes a loss would have also dampened their win over the Etihad Stadium outfit in the Manchester Derby before the international break. The Red Devils travel to White Hart Lane to face title chasing Tottenham Hotspur in their next fixture, a game that will have a bearing on the title race as well as the race for the top four.
"I think it was more or less a stolen victory because we didn't play so well. It looked like we were not fresh enough in spite of the fact that we had a lot of days to prepare [for] the match. With the international break, you never know how the players are coming back. I'm very happy with the victory, but they [Everton] also could have scored two goals, I think," Van Gaal told MUTV after the 1-0 win over Everton.
"We were the lucky team today. It's very important; if you lose today, the win against City is worthless. Now, we are still in the race and we have still four home matches and three away matches. It's a very important game against Tottenham [on Sunday], we played well there last year, it was one of our best matches so I hope we shall continue that," the Dutch coach added.