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FA Cup a ´success´ but top-four finish crucial – Van Gaal

Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal feels winning the FA Cup would represent a successful season, but said Champions League qualification is more important.

Van Gaal’s men take on Everton in a cup semi-final on Saturday but are fifth in the Premier League, two points adrift of rivals Manchester City in the race for Champions League football.

The Dutchman, however, said a trophy represented a successful campaign, although he knows the importance of a top-four finish.

“I think it is always a success when you win the title,” Van Gaal said.

“For the club it is more important, I have said that already a lot of times, to qualify for the Champions League, because we have to show ourselves at the highest level. And that was also our aim.

“I think always when you win a title it brings again something where Manchester United stands for.

“We have had a period of a lot of titles and we want to bring it back and when you win the FA Cup you have a title and a very respectable title in England – more than other countries.”

Van Gaal’s men are favourites to reach the FA Cup decider, taking on a struggling Everton side with manager Roberto Martinez under growing pressure.

Coming off a 4-0 Merseyside derby loss to Liverpool, Martinez’s side are sure to be hurting, leaving Van Gaal wary.

“When I see the people on the streets, they are so excited. You can feel already for the fans that it is fantastic,” he said.

“But we are only in the semi-final and not the final and I want to speak about Everton because it is not a piece of cake.

“We have to beat Everton and in spite of them losing 4-0, we have showed already this season that we have lost against Arsenal and the next match we have won.

“So Everton can do that also after Liverpool. And when you are winning, you can also lose. In spite of them having a lot of injuries I have read, still they have the chance to beat us.”

Fri 22 Apr, 2016
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