Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal has reiterated his stand on the David de Gea transfer saga, and believes it has affected the entire team. He says the sooner it ends the better.
De Gea has been linked with a move to Real Madrid the entire summer, with Spanish daily AS reporting that Van Gaal has given the go-ahead to the club's hierarchy to sanction the move, but the Spanish capital club are unwilling to meet United's valuation for the stopper, which is around £25m ($38.7m) as reported by AS.
The Dutchman omitted the Spanish goalkeeper for their opening Premier League encounter against Tottenham Hotspur, as he believes that his number one's focus is not entirely on the game at hand. He has called for a change in the duration of the transfer period as he feels that going into a season with uncertainty over a player's future is harmful to the club and the rest of the squad.
"The player has to manage this situation. I think when it is September 1 then there is already a decision made, because then the transfer period is over and then we have to manage the new situation. That may be easier, but I don't know, we have to see and wait, and observe," Van Gaal is quoted as saying by the Manchester Evening News.
"I am the victim, the fellow players are the victims, the club is the victim but that is why the transfer period has to change," he added.
"A player cannot manage this situation and we have observed and seen him in training sessions, we have seen him in matches and he is not the David de Gea of last year. But you cannot say 'oh, that is De Gea', he tries and does his utmost best but it is a difficult situation."
"So now we have to play our first match and this is the most important match, so I want players who can only focus on the match and he is not capable of doing that," the Dutch manager said.
The former Bayern Munich and Barcelona manager was said to be peeved with reporters due to their increased focus on De Gea's situation, but went on to clarify United's stance on the matter and shed light on the reason for the transfer not being completed so far.
Keen to retain goalkeeper
Van Gaal also made it clear that the Red Devils were keen to retain the goalkeeper, while insisting that Real would have to meet their valuation in order to take the Spanish international 'keeper to the Santiago Bernabeu.
"The process involves three parties, I have already said in press conferences before, also. That is the player, the club and Ed Woodward and I."
"He is the best goalkeeper we have had in the last three years, I believe. Two years he was nominated by the fans as the best player of this club. Do you think the trainer coach wants him to leave? I don't think so," the Red Devils manager said.
"Manchester United has to pay. We have to pay for all the players a certain amount and what Real Madrid has offered."
"When you say something you have to know something, but you don't know and then you say in a suggestive way we have to be proactive. You cannot be proactive. We are asking for money and they have to pay money, it's always like that," Van Gaal insisted.
"But in the last few years Manchester has paid a lot of money and we have never received a lot of money for our players."
Van Gaal has already indicated that United will probably need to sign another goalkeeper, as De Gea gets closer to the exit at Old Trafford.