Louis van Gaal says that “unfortunately” he was right to warn Adnan Januzaj against joining Borussia Dortmund on loan.
The Manchester United manager knew the Belgian winger would struggle to force his way into an excellent Dortmund side; he has now ended his loan without making a single Bundesliga start.
Januzaj’s only goal this season came for United in a 1-0 win over Aston Villa before his loan began.
Van Gaal said: “I believe in the talent of Adnan Januzaj, I have said that also, and I have said already that it would be difficult for him to play matches at Dortmund. Unfortunately I was right.
“When he doesn’t play there too much, he can train better with us and maybe he can play in the first team.”
That’s a big ‘maybe’. Worryingly for Januzaj, he has been grouped with striker Will Keane (one goal in 20 Championship games) in Van Gaal’s mind. Or with Michael Keane, who he originally cited as a returning loanee.
“It’s more or less the same as we have done with Will Keane, for example,” explained Van Gaal. “They are coming to us to ask for a second chance, and Manchester United is a club who takes care of all their players. I think it’s a very good habit to do that.”