Van Gaal hints at buying new defenders

The Red Devils boss is wary of jumping to conclusions during a difficult period but hints that reinforcement at the back during the winter window may be necessary

Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal has hinted at moving for defensive reinforcements in January.

With injuries and suspensions playing havoc with his back line, the Dutchman has often had to field youngsters like Tyler Blackett and Paddy McNair at centre-back.

Marcos Rojo – who plays at left-back for Argentina – has been one of his most consistent selections in the middle – though he is now injured – while Chris Smalling was criticised for a needless sending-off against Manchester City.

As a result, the Dutchman had to field Daley Blind as a centre-back in his sides clash with Crystal Palace on Saturday alongside McNair, leading to reports that Van Gaal will pursue Aston Villa’s Ron Vlaar or Borussia Dortmund star Mats Hummels in the winter window.

Asked by reporters about making new signings, the United boss replied: “It is clear that a lot of things happen and you can judge better in good times than you can in bad times.

“Maybe you are right [about January recruitment] but we have to see [for] that.”

However, Van Gaal – who wants to recall winger Nani from his loan at Sporting Lisbon – rejects the notion that his side are in a defensive crisis.

The Red Devils are off to their worst-ever start to a Premier League season, having taken just 13 points from their first 10 games.