Happy Louis van Gaal press conference day, everybody! Today, Manchester United's presiding Dutchman was asked how he felt about Paul Scholes being critical of his team. And he's not having any of it:
You have an expression. I always use Dutch expression, but you have a fantastic expression for that: ‘sticks and stones can break my bones, but names [words] will never hurt me. Fantastic, fantastic expression. You do understand the meaning of this? He [Scholes] doesn't have the responsibility, so he can say everything.
A two-footer of which the midfielder would be proud. Of course, Scholes does have something of a point, in that United are largely awful to watch at the moment. But Van Gaal is generally unimpressed with criticism from the punditry chair.
Why he is saying something? For the benefit of the club or the benefit of himself? I don't want to defend myself because I cannot defend, because he is a legend and he has a lot of resonance, so I hear. I think when you are a legend, you have to speak with the manager or his friend, Ryan Giggs, or Ed Woodward, but not this way, because he will be paid by the BBC or Sky.
And there was more!
When Scholes thinks I should go, then I go. But he is not a responsible man, he is not the Glazers or Ed Woodward. I know when we shall lose and lose and lose, I shall be finished, but I shall do everything for this club because, as I have already said, this club is unbelievable.
By "responsible" we assume that he means "in charge of United", rather than, say, "always running with scissors". Entertainingly, none of this made it onto the club's official Twitter account, which preferred to focus on the facts.
Boss: "Last year we had 13 points from 10 games, now we have 20 from 10. We are improving a lot, but it's a process." #mufc— Manchester United (@ManUtd) October 30, 2015
YEAH PAUL, TALK NAH.
In more prosaic news, Paddy McNair and Antonio Valencia are both injured and will miss tomorrow's trip to Crystal Palace. Memphis Depay and James Wilson both picked up knocks against Middlesbrough and according to Van Gaal "We'll have to wait and see."