Football: Van Gaal expects United to react like champions after heavy Arsenal defeat

Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal has demanded his players start acting like a team near the top of the table despite their disappointing loss.
Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal has demanded his players start acting like a team near the top of the table despite their disappointing loss.PHOTO: REUTERS

LONDON (AFP) - Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal has warned his players a repeat of their display against Arsenal will be unacceptable if they want to be Premier League title challengers.

United suffered a 3-0 defeat by Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium last time out as they were blown away in the first 20 minutes of the game by two goals from Alexis Sanchez and one from Mesut Oezil.

The Red Devils return to action after the international break on Saturday with a clash against Everton at Goodison Park.

Van Gaal admitted it has been a difficult fortnight for him following such a disappointing result and has demanded his players start acting like a team near the top of the table.

"It has been an awful two weeks," said the Dutchman, "Before the last international break in September we lost against Swansea, these are awful weeks. You are constantly thinking about how it happened.

"We are always evaluating ourselves and we cannot accept that. Not I cannot accept it, we cannot. Not only my members of staff but also the players cannot accept it. We cannot accept it from each other. We want to be the champion, then you have to behave like a champion.

"Also to improve yourself, to be, in the future, the champion. You have to improve every time. That is what I am saying."

United captain Wayne Rooney will be available to face former club Everton having recovered from an ankle injury.

Paddy McNair is absent with an abdominal injury while Ashley Young is also struggling with a calf problem. Marcos Rojo (hamstring) is doubtful while Luke Shaw is a long-term absentee with a broken leg.