Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal insisted he did not regret leaving out Marcus Rashford and Daley Blind for their 1-0 win over Norwich City despite seeing Anthony Martial and Matteo Darmian pick up injuries.
Rashford and Blind were rested for Saturday’s Premier League encounter at Carrow Road in which Juan Mata scored the winner in the 72nd minute to move United within a point of neighbours Manchester City – who face Arsenal on Sunday – in the race for Champions League football.
However, the win came at a cost as Martial picked up a knock in the warm-up and Darmian was taken off in the 12th minute with an ankle injury.
Darmian will be assessed on Sunday but Van Gaal was quick to defend his decision to omit Rashford and Blind.
“You cannot regret your decisions. You have seen also [other] players who need rest. You cannot give everybody a rest,” Van Gaal told BT Sport.
“We are still in business, I said to the players. They were very tired but we have won, so that’s good.”
Asked if Mata’s goal could be decisive in the top-four battle, Van Gaal replied: “I hope so. That is what we are doing, we keep the pressure on our competitors.
“We want to play at the highest level. It is still very tough because now we have to play away against West Ham [on Tuesday].”
On Martial, the Dutchman said: “When a player says he feels something he shall not play.
“I’m more or less a Gunners fan [on Sunday], it’s always a difficult game between those kind of teams. After the defeat against Real Madrid. It’s not so easy for Manchester City to revive.”
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