Daley Blind has spoken out over the sacking of Louis van Gaal and says Manchester United enjoyed a “successful season” despite finishing fifth.
Van Gaal was dismissed by United on Monday, 48 hours after winning the FA Cup at Wembley following a 2-1 triumph over Crystal Palace after extra-time.
Blind, who was brought to Old Trafford from Ajax in 2014 by Van Gaal, believes his compatriot “deserved more respect” over recent months, during which time speculation has been rife over the manager’s future and United’s interest in Mourinho.
“I’ve enjoyed working with the manager so much,” said Blind.
“I would have liked to have carried on for a long while.
“A manager at a big club in the Premier League will always be under pressure.
“But in the case of Van Gaal he has not been treated fairly over the last six months.
“I think a manager with the status of Van Gaal, who has achieved so much in his career, deserved more respect.”
Reports have suggested that the dressing room was close to mutiny due to Van Gaal’s methods, but Blind believes the whole squad should be grateful to their former manager for his backing this season.
Blind said: “No matter what was said or written about him as a manager, he never stopped protecting us as players.
“He has defended us under any kind of circumstances, he was always taking the stick instead of us.
“I think I can say that the whole squad is grateful for that, for what he has done in that respect for us as players.
“As players we kept believing in each other and we also kept believing in our manager, which was part of the reason we were able to win the FA Cup.
“We achieved this as a group, including the manager. In the end, this was a successful season in our eyes.”