Louis van Gaal
Louis van Gaal says his staff prepare very thoroughly in the weeks leading up to a match. Getty Images

Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal says he is capable of making any player from his squad better and has set his sights on further improving striker Wayne Rooney.

The England international was made the Red Devils captain by the Dutchman. He was also made the captain of the national side by the Three Lions' coach Roy Hodgson earlier this year.

Rooney has been in impressive form in recent times as the striker has netted twice against Arsenal and Hull City. Van Gaal admitted that he is delighted to have handed him the captain's armband and claims the England manager also followed his advice.

"I can make every player better. I'm sorry. That's arrogant, but I can," Van Gaal said, as quoted by the Mirror.

"Before I came here, of course, I had heard of his reputation. But, from the first day, he was not the Wayne Rooney that people had talked about."

"He was, in my eyes, a great example in training and, of course, he has achieved a certain level. I think he shall always play with me — although, when he is in a bad moment, maybe I can be convinced to change him."

"But he is my captain now. He is the men who sets the example for the other players. So I'm very pleased."

"I have the impression that he lives for football and that he likes being the captain of Manchester United. Of course, being captain of England helps him to be a better captain of United."

"He has more experience. But I have to remind everyone that I put him first as captain. Roy Hodgson followed my advice," the United manager concluded.

United maintained their fourth spot after sealing a comfortable 3-0 victory over Hull on Saturday. They face Stoke City at Old Trafford on Tuesday evening and the 20-times English champions will be without the services of their record signing Angel Di Maria.

The former Real Madrid star picked up a hamstring injury in the first quarter of the game against Hull. Rooney also limped out after the final whistle, but Van Gaal confirmed the striker will be fit for the midweek league clash.