It looks like Ed Woodward is going to have to do this the hard way. According to the Times — who are paywalled, but it'll be elsewhere soon — Louis van Gaal has rejected the chance to return to international football as technical director of the Netherlands.
However, the Times also rebuts those stories about Van Gaal being told he's safe.
Van Gaal, who has come under pressure since United dropped out of the top four in the Barclays Premier League, has been given no assurances over his future at Old Trafford, despite contrary reports in Holland.
Apparently Van Gaal is "hopeful" that if he can get United into the top four, then he'll be allowed to see out the remainder of his contract. If he's right, then this is something of a tricky fork for any United fans wanting to see a change of manager. Hope for immediate success, the amusing sight of Manchester City in the Europa League, and another year of this? Or secretly set your sights on a fifth place finish and the swinging axe to follow. Choices, choices.