Louis van Gaal's 18 Man Utd signings: how they fared and where they are now

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Louis van Gaal was back in the headlines this week after launching a sensational rant on FIFA's decision to stage the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.

The fiery Dutchman – who is currently the head coach of the Netherlands national team – has never been one to shy away from airing his opinion in public; even if it is a controversial one. And as fans of Manchester United will be able to allude to, there's rarely a dull moment when Van Gaal is at the helm.

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Despite lifting the FA Cup during his two-year spell at Old Trafford, Van Gaal's tenure was cut short back in 2016 as United pursued Jose Mourinho. Many deemed United's decision to dismiss the 70-year-old harsh – but was Van Gaal a success at Old Trafford? An influx of new recruits arrived at the club during Van Gaal's premiership in a bid to restore United's fortunes, but the vast majority failed to make the grade. Here, Mirror Football delves into the 18 players that were signed by Van Gaal and where they are now…

Ander Herrera – PSG

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Herrera was an integral player for Van Gaal after United snapped up the ex-Athletic Bilbao man back in 2014. The 32-year-old playmaker amassed over 180 appearances for United before quitting the club in the summer of 2019.

The Spaniard linked up with Paris Saint-Germain after running his contract at Old Trafford down and helped the French giants to clinch a remarkable domestic treble during his first year in Paris.

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Luke Shaw – Manchester United

Shaw was another prospect snapped up from Southampton, with United shelling out £27million back in 2014 to acquire the England star.

Louis van Gaal's 18 Man Utd signings: how they fared and where they are now

Van Gaal signed Luke Shaw back in 2014 – but the Englishman has been plagued by injuries ( Image: Action Images)

Join the debate! Do you think Van Gaal was a success at Man Utd? Let us know here.

Since then, Shaw's progress has been plagued by injury and fitness issues, but he has shown glimpses of the talent that convinced the Old Trafford hierarchy to give the big-money move the green light.

Vanja Milinkovic-Savic – Torino

Milinkovic-Savic also signed for United back in the summer of 2014, but the Serbian shot-stopper failed to make a single senior appearance before he left the club in 2016. The 25-year-old is currently on the books of Torino.

Marcos Rojo – Boca Juniors

Van Gaal swooped to bring Rojo to Old Trafford in the summer of 2014 in a bid to add some steel to United's defence. However, Rojo struggled for first-team action after Van Gaal was given the boot.

Despite being a peripheral figure at the club, Rojo only sealed a permanent exit from Old Trafford last year, when he returned to his native Argentina to link up with Boca Juniors.

Angel Di Maria – PSG

Di Maria was Van Gaal's marquee summer signing back in 2014, but his stay in the Premier League quickly turned sour. The Argentine winger struggled to impress and only lasted 12 months at Old Trafford before he was offloaded to PSG.

The 34-year-old still plies his trade in Paris and has played a crucial role in PSG's monopoly of the French game over the past seven years.

Radamel Falcao – Rayo Vallecano

Falcao arrived at Old Trafford as one of the most feared strikers in Europe – but he failed to live up to his remarkable reputation. The Colombian striker mustered just four goals in 29 games for United; who, unsurprisingly, didn't pursue a permanent deal.

Louis van Gaal's 18 Man Utd signings: how they fared and where they are now

Radamel Falcao flopped during his year-long stint at Old Trafford ( Image: Matthew Peters)

After bouncing around various European clubs, Falcao has seemingly found a home in Spain with Rayo Vallecano following a three-year spell in Turkey with Galatasaray.

Daley Blind – Ajax

Van Gaal wasted no time in snapping up Blind after the versatile defender played an integral role in the Netherlands' stunning 2014 World Cup campaign.

However, Blind soon found himself surplus to requirements at Old Trafford after Van Gaal was axed. The Dutchman has fared better back in his homeland with Ajax, and has even managed to play on after being fitted with an ICD (implantable cardioverter defibrillator) back in 2020.

Timothy Fosu-Mensah – Bayer Leverkusen

Fosu-Mensah also arrived at the club in the summer of 2014 after coming through the academy at Ajax – however, he failed to make the grade in the Premier League despite loan stints at Fulham and Crystal Palace. The 24-year-old has now found a home with Bayer Leverkusen.

Andy Kellett – Guiseley

Kellett arrived at United on loan from then-Championship side Bolton in January 2015 and played for the club's Under-21s. Since then, Kellett has had spells at Wigan, Chesterfield, and Notts County, and currently plies his trade in the National League North for Guiseley.

Victor Valdes – Retired

Valdes had forged a reputation as one of Europe's finest goalkeepers during his decade-long stay with Barcelona. However, he ended up at Old Trafford by chance after injury scuppered a proposed move to Monaco.

Louis van Gaal's 18 Man Utd signings: how they fared and where they are now

Victor Valdes hardly played for Manchester United ( Image: PA)

In hindsight, it was a move that didn't work out for anyone. The Spaniard made just two senior appearances for United and ended up hanging up his gloves after stints with Standard Liege and Middlesbrough.

Sadiq El Fitouri – Free agent

El Fitouri was snapped up after impressing for Salford City. The defender has originally been on Manchester City's books as a youngster. But the Libyan international failed to make the grade at Old Trafford and is currently without a club.

Memphis Depay – Barcelona

Depay was another player who failed to live up to lofty expectations at Old Trafford. The Dutchman lasted just 18 months in the Premier League before he was snapped up Lyon.

Louis van Gaal's 18 Man Utd signings: how they fared and where they are now

Memphis Depay was another signing made by Van Gaal during his time at Old Trafford ( Image: Getty)

After starring for the French giants, Depay sealed a dream move to Barcelona last summer – although he has faltered in recent months at the Nou Camp after his electric start to life in La Liga.

Matteo Darmian – Inter Milan

Darmian was snapped up from Torino in the summer of 2015 by Van Gaal, but he failed to nail down a first-team berth after Van Gaal left the club. The Italian full-back managed just a handful of appearances before he moved onto Inter Milan via Parma.

Bastian Schweinsteiger – Retired

Schweinsteiger had worked with Van Gaal during their time at Bayern Munich, but the German World Cup winner struggled to replicate his success in Germany in the Premier League. The 37-year-old, who is now retired, made just 35 appearances for United.

Morgan Schneiderlin – Nice

Schneiderlin was snapped up after impressing for Southampton, but the French midfielder failed to replicate his success on the south coast at Old Trafford. United were fortunate to recoup the £25m they splashed out on the midfielder from Everton. Schneiderlin left the Toffees to join Nice back in 2020.

Sergio Romero – Venezia

After arriving at Old Trafford in 2015, Romero spent years in the wilderness due to the impressive form of David de Gea. The 35-year-old finally quit the club last summer to join Italian outfit Venezia.

Anthony Martial – Sevilla (loan)

Manchester United and Van Gaal paid big money to bring Martial to Old Trafford back in 2015. However, the Frenchman has netted just 79 goals in 269 games for United since then.

Louis van Gaal's 18 Man Utd signings: how they fared and where they are now

Anthony Martial is another big-money signing who has failed to live up to expectations at Old Trafford ( Image: OLI SCARFF/AFP via Getty Images)

Although Martial is still officially at the club, he is currently on loan at Sevilla after falling out of favour under United's interim chief, Ralf Rangnick, and a permanent exit is anticipated in the summer.

Regan Poole – Lincoln City

Poole was snapped up by United from Newport County but the Welshman made just the solitary outing for the club back in 2016 against FC Midtjylland in a Europa League clash. Poole now plays for Lincoln City in League One.

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