Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal watched his side cruise past Shrewsbury in the FA Cup on Monday night before admitting Europa League opponents Midtjylland played an unlikely role in the victory.
United progressed to the quarter-finals thanks to goals from Chris Smalling, Juan Mata and Jesse Lingard in a 3-0 victory, but it was Mata’s free-kick to make it 2-0.
The Spaniard curled the set-piece into the top corner of the League One side’s net following a routine that involved three United players standing in an offside position, before running back onside just as Mata struck the ball.
The ‘fake wall’ in front of the goalkeeper is a technique regularly employed by Danish champions Midtjylland and they tried it out against the Red Devils themselves last week.
Van Gaal admitting Man United learned the wall technique from Midtjylland is worse than Moyes' "we aspire to be like City".
— Alecs Stam (@AlecsStam) February 22, 2016
And van Gaal wasn’t shy in admitting he shamelessly stole the tactic from the Danes:
United take on Midtjylland in the Europa League’s last-32 second-leg at Old Trafford, 2-1 down from the first leg.
It’ll be interesting to see what happens if they get any free-kicks just outside the area.
What do you think of United pinching Midtjylland’s tactics?
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