Former Manchester United defender Rafael da Silva has pulled no punches in his criticism of Louis van Gaal, who oversaw his sale to Lyon in 2015. The fan-favourite defender was one of the shining lights of Sir Alex Ferguson’s last season but failed to impress Van Gaal.
Despite winning the FA Cup in 2016, few Manchester United supporters will have fond memories of Van Gaal’s two-year reign at Old Trafford, with most games played out in dull fashion.
Rafael has now hit out at his former boss again by likening his brand of football to an army camp: “Van Gaal hated instinct, hated one-touch football,” he wrote in his new book The Sunshine Kids: Fabio & Rafael Da Silva, according to the Daily Mail.
“He slowed us down so much our football was unrecognisable. He wanted no heart and all head. It felt like an army camp.”
Despite featuring regularly under David Moyes, Rafael was one of the first players to be told he can leave United when the Dutchman took over in 2014. Jesse Lingard, Antonio Valencia, and Paddy McNair were all preferred at right-back in Van Gaal’s three-at-the-back system.
Following his departure from United, Rafael spent five years at Lyon before leaving for Istanbul Basaksehir last year, where he played against United twice in the Champions League.