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Manchester United boss Louis van Gaal bemoaned the club's wretched luck with injuries this season after Will Keane and Cameron Borthwick-Jackson limped out of their 3-0 FA Cup fifth-round win against Shrewsbury Town on Monday night (22 February). The young duo joined an ever-growing list of casualties after hurting themselves at New Meadow.
Borthwick-Jackson, 19, was removed by the Dutchman at the break after injury himself in the first-half. Keane, meanwhile, had to be withdrawn during the second half, meaning United were forced to play the last few minutes of the cup tie with ten men.
"It [injuries] was unbelievably unlucky again. The players were very committed to perform and you see what is the consequence," he said, according to BBC Sport.
Van Gaal also revealed Spanish goalkeeper David de Gea is struggling to be fit for the club's must-win Europa League game against Midtjyllandand at Old Trafford on 25 February. However, he said the injury was not as bad as United had first feared.
Besides their injury troubles, Van Gaal was impressed with his side's comfortable win at New Meadow, which came courtesy of a deflected effort from Chris Smalling, a freekick from Juan Mata and a first-time volley from Jesse Lingard. After the match, Van Gaal revealed that the Mata effort - which saw three United players intentionally block the view of the goalkeeper - was inspired by their Europa League opponents.
"We scored a lucky goal with Smalling and the free-kick was fantastic. We learn this from Midtjyllandand because they have taken such free-kicks frequently," he said. "We asked referees in advance if this is allowed, it is and I think this is unbelievable because I think you cannot obscure the view of the goalkeeper."
Despite the doom and gloom that continues to surround the club, Van Gaal remains upbeat about their prospects for the rest of the campaign. "Everyone shall say Manchester United have to win against Shrewsbury Town. For the players it is fantastic because we are in the quarter-finals of the FA Cup," the United manager said.
"We are in all the competitions, just six points behind Manchester City, we have a lot of chances, a lot of titles to fight for. It is isn't easy because we have to win a lot of games but it is still possible."