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Dublin: 11°C Monday 19 April 2021
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Falcao just a bit part player for now says Van Gaal

The Colombian can only play ’20 minutes’ according to his boss.

Manchester United striker Radamel Falcao is yet to return to full fitness.
Manchester United striker Radamel Falcao is yet to return to full fitness.
Image: Alex Livesey

RADAMEL FALCAO IS only fit to play 20 minutes at Southampton on Monday, Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal has said.

The Colombian, on loan from Monaco, was ruled out for a month due to a calf injury suffered in October.

The 28-year old came off the bench in United’s wins over Hull City and Stoke, and Van Gaal said he was “not interested” if Falcao is unhappy with that.

“I have to adapt to the needs of the selection,” Van Gaal said.

“Then I selected him in spite of the fact he can only play 20 minutes at that level because the rhythm of the game in the Premier League is the highest.”

United made a slow start to the season as injuries threatened to ruin their campaign but four consecutive league wins have them sitting fifth.

Van Gaal said it was important for players to prove their fitness in training before making their first-team returns.

“Yes, we are seeing the light at the end of the tunnel,” the Dutchman said.

“[Phil] Jones will train with the team next week if everything is good. Rafael has already trained with us for one week. Also now he has to play in the second squad.

“I’m sorry for that but it is my philosophy and the players [need to understand]. If they don’t I’m not interested.”

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