Louis van Gaal: Atmosphere in Manchester United dressing room is maybe too good

first_imgLouis van Gaal has criticised his players for creating a cosy atmosphere within the Manchester United dressing room. Press Association The United manager hinted on the eve of Saturday’s third round tie that life had almost become too easy for his players. The Dutchman is, quite understandably, keen to foster a harmonious environment within his squad, but claims there should be plenty of room for constructive criticism at Carrington and Old Trafford too. “No I don’t think so,” Van Gaal said when asked if the players’ mood had been lifted following a win over Swansea and a draw versus Chelsea. “I think the atmosphere in our dressing room is very good. Maybe too good because they are always protecting the dressing room, their colleagues. “That is very good, until a certain point.” Paul Ince once cited the double-winning team of the 1993-94 season as the best of Sir Alex Ferguson’s time at United thanks to the constant pursuit of perfection from the likes of himself, Eric Cantona, Peter Schmeichel and Roy Keane, who would not hesitate to call out anyone in the dressing room that they felt were not up to the task. “That 93-94 team was Fergie’s best because there were so many opinionated people, we had rows but we came together on the pitch,” the former United midfielder said in 2008. Van Gaal has also revealed he has taken steps to ensure the dressing room is more democratic. The United boss has started asking his players for more input with regard to tactics and game plans in an attempt to turn the club’s fortunes around. “We have also changed our approach to the players to make it easier to take responsibility,” he said. “I have stimulated them to think about football. The game is a brain sport and now you can let them think with you and therefore you can change your approach and so the players take the commitment, for example, for the game plan and other kinds of decisions and then the commitment is higher and bigger. “But we have to see how it shall work.” One manager known for his man management skills is Pep Guardiola. The highly-rated Catalan manager announced on Tuesday his intention to move to the Premier League when he leaves Bayern Munich in the summer. Van Gaal insists he does not feel threatened by the former Barcelona manager’s declaration. ”I’m at the end of my career so for me it’s not so interesting,” said Van Gaal, who managed Guardiola during his two spells as Barca manager. “For me it is interesting how I take care of Manchester United in my contract and after this season I still have one year to go.” A few weeks ago it seemed unlikely Van Gaal would have the chance to see out that contract. The 64-year-old appeared to have ridden out the troubles until Adidas chief executive Herbert Hainer rocked the boat with his take on United’s playing style this week. Hainer, who signed off a £750million sponsorship deal with United last year, said United’s style is “not exactly what we want to see.” Van Gaal insists he has a “very good” relationship with Hainer, who was on the board at the time the Dutchman was in charge of Bayern, and played down the significance of the criticism. “I don’t think I have to respond to that kind of remark,” Van Gaal said. “I do think that is more the function of my chief executive (Ed Woodward) to respond. “I have a very good relationship (with Hainer). He was on the front row when I was at Bayern Munich (earlier this season) at a sponsor’s event. “He is more interested in revenues and these were very good.” While the pressure on Van Gaal is now not as intense as it was towards the end of 2015, when his team went on their worst run in 26 years, an early exit from the FA Cup at the hands of Sheffield United this weekend would shift the spotlight back on to the Red Devils boss. Van Gaal took the flak for that sequence of eight matches without a win, but his players must take a portion of the blame too. last_img read more

Syracuse blown out by No. 6 Cornell, 5-0

first_img Published on February 6, 2018 at 9:32 pm Contact Adam: adhillma@syr.edu | @_adamhillman Facebook Twitter Google+ UPDATED: Feb. 6, 2018 at 10:09 p.m.No. 6 Cornell (15-7-3, 11-5-2 Eastern College Athletic Conference) drubbed Syracuse (9-17-2, 8-5-1 College Hockey Association), 5-0, on Tuesday at Lynah Rink in Ithaca. After the last game of its non-conference schedule, SU finished with one win and 12 losses outside of the CHA.SU struggled to begin the game, allowing three goals in the first period. After two goals from Cornell sophomore Kristin O’Neill in the first 15 minutes, Syracuse’s lone penalty in the period turned into a Cornell powerplay goal via junior forward Diana Buckley.Halfway through the first period, Orange freshman Emma Polaski hit the post on one of Syracuse’s three shots in the first period.In the second period, two goals in a span of six minutes pushed the Big Red lead to five, an insurmountable deficit for SU. O’Neill completed her hat trick with six minutes remaining in the period.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textWhile SU had one more powerplay opportunity than Cornell, it could not convert any into goals. This is the second time in three games that SU has not scored.Freshman goaltender Edith D’Astous-Moreau started in place of usual starter, senior goaltender Abbey Miller, and saved 32 of 37 shots. This was the freshman’s third start of the season and her first since Jan. 9, also against Cornell.With six games remaining before the CHA tournament, the Orange return to conference play when it faces Rochester Institute Technology at Tennity Ice Pavilion on Friday, Feb. 9.CORRECTION: In a previous version of this post, Kristin O’Neill, Edith D’Astous-Moreau and Abbey Miller were misnamed. The Daily Orange regrets these errors. Commentslast_img read more

Gill and Jones lead English challenge in Portgual

first_img Tags: Amateur, Mens, Portuguese 18 Feb 2018 Gill and Jones lead English challenge in Portgual England players, led by Bailey Gill and Ben Jones, put on an impressive performance in the Portuguese amateur men’s championship at the Montado golf resort, taking 10 of the top 20 places.Gill, from Lindrick, Yorkshire, and Jones, from Northamptonshire County, were joint runners-up alongside Denmark’s Sebastian Friedrichsen on 12-under par. The championship was won by Portugal’s Victor Lopes on 15-under.Gill birdied the last for a closing round of two-under 70, while Jones (pictured) charged up the leaderboard with his bogey-free 64.Three other English players completed top 10 finishes: Thomas Plumb (Sherborne, Dorset) was sixth on 10-under, after signing off with 66; Josh McMahon (Wallasey, Cheshire) was ninth on eight-under and Robin Williams (Peterborough Milton, Northamptonshire) was 10th on seven-under.Behind them were another five English players in the top 20: Conor Gough (Stoke Park, BB&O), Jason Stokes (La Moye, Jersey), Jake Bolton (Ogbourne Downs, Wiltshire), Harry Goddard (Hanbury Manor, Hertfordshire) and Tom Sloman (Taunton & Pickeridge, Somerset).Gill, Jones, McMahon and Sloman are members of the England Golf Men’s A Squad, while Williams and Goddard are in the Boys’ Squad.Image copyright Leaderboard Photographylast_img read more

Tiger matches worst score in a major

first_imgARDMORE, Pa. (AP) — This isn’t the kind of record Tiger Woods had in mind at the U.S. Open.Woods went out-of-bounds on his second tee shot of the final round at Merion and closed with a 4-over 74. That gave him his worst 72-hole score as a pro in the U.S. Open, and it tied for his high score in any major.“I did a lot of things right,” Woods said. “Unfortunately, I did a few things wrong, as well.”Woods finished at 13-over 293.His previous high score in a U.S. Open was 290 at The Olympic Club in 1998 and Shinnecock Hills in 2004. Woods shot 294 at Oakland Hills in 1996 as an amateur.Just two days ago, Woods was four shots out of the lead and very much in the hunt to end his five-year drought in the majors. Then, he went 76-74 for his worst weekend in a major championship. Just over two weeks ago, the world’s No. 1 player had won three of his last four events on the PGA Tour and was starting to establish his dominance.But he looked ordinary at Merion.Starting the final round 10 shots behind, Woods made a birdie putt on the opening hole. Instead of a fist pump, he offered only a mild wave. Whatever hopes he had of at least getting his name on the leaderboard ended quickly. Woods pushed his tee shot to the right on the par-5 second hole, over the trees and out-of-bounds. His next tee shot was close to going out-of-bounds, stopping a few yards away in front of a tree. He wound up with a triple bogey.It was his only big number of the week, though his 20 bogeys were startling.“I struggled with the speed all week,” Woods said. “These greens are grainy. It’s one of the older bent grasses — creeping bent. I struggled with the speed, especially right around the hole. Putts were breaking a lot more. I gave it a little more break and then it would hang. That’s kind of the way it was this week.”The 293 matched his high score at any major, last year at the Masters when he tied for 40th.Woods did not mention any pain in his left elbow, though he kept that a mystery throughout the week. He was flexing and shaking his left hand on shots out of the rough early in the week, saying only that it was painful. He later revealed that he first hurt it at The Players Championship last month, which he won. But he didn’t mention the shot or even which round it happened.Merion remained a mystery for Woods throughout the week. For the first time since Olympic in 1998 — the year he was rebuilding his swing — he failed to break par in any of the four rounds at a U.S. Open.“It played tricky. The rough was up,” Woods said. “They were raking the rough up every morning into the grain, and the pins were really tough.”Woods plays again in two weeks at the AT&T National at Congressional, where he is the defending champion. His next major is the British Open at Muirfield, where in 2002 he was going for the calendar Grand Slam until he got caught in a vicious weather pattern of a cold, sideways rain and shot 81 to fall from contention. The final major of the year is at Oak Hill for the PGA Championship, where 10 years ago Woods never shot better than 72 and wound up at 12-over 292.“There’s always a lesson to be learned in every tournament, whether you win or lose,” Woods said. “I’ll look back at the things I did right and the things I did wrong.” Tiger Woods acknowledges the gallery after putting on the 18th hole during the third round of the U.S. Open golf tournament at Merion Golf Club, Saturday, June 15, 2013, in Ardmore, Pa. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)Tiger Woods hits down the 18th hole during the fourth round of the U.S. Open golf tournament at Merion Golf Club, Sunday, June 16, 2013, in Ardmore, Pa. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)Woods matches worst score in a majorlast_img read more