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Van Gaal prepares to cut unwanted players

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He's seen enough, and he's sharpening his axe. But who is for the chop?

Duane Burleson

Life as a football manager isn't all about buying shiny new players. Every action has an equal and opposite reaction, arrivals mean departures, and for the players on the fringes of the United squad, the day of reckoning is drawing nigh. Once tonight's 'final' against Liverpool is done, Louis van Gaal is ready to swing the axe.

I shall make judgments after the tour. I have let all the players play so I know now more than I did before. But in football you have to judge. Always you have to give a chance to a player to make a transfer when you see that his perspective is not so high to play. You have to say it in advance. When you say it on 31 August it's too late. I shall say to the players what I think after the tour.

The general consensus among the papers is that one, two or maybe all three of Shinji Kagawa, Javier Hernández and Wilfried Zaha are in trouble, along with Anderson and Marouane Fellaini, who both missed the tour. TBB's wholly uninformed guess is that Kagawa will be kept on as a flexible squad option, but the rest will soon be sitting on Sir Matt Busby Way with 'For Sale' signs hanging around their necks. And so the cycle goes on.