Man Utd boss van Gaal unsurprised by Pelle success

Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal has claimed that he is not surprised by the success that striker Graziano Pelle has enjoyed since moving to Southampton, Sky Sports has reported.

Ahead of the meeting between the two sides at the St. Mary’s Stadium on Monday evening, van Gaal – who signed Pelle while manager of Dutch side AZ Alkmaar – said: “I am not surprised [at his success] because I bought him at AZ as he was an attacking point. I’ve said about (Robin) van Persie that I like strikers who are an attacking point, not only a striker who scores goals.

“He is also very creative. He is always seeing the third man. Van Persie is also always seeing the third man. Those kind of strikers are the ones I like. So it is not surprising. It may be surprising that he scores nine goals – that is a lot – but he can do it. I knew that.’

Pelle followed Ronald Koeman to the Saints from Feyenoord in the summer, and has gone on to start all 14 of the Premier League games this season, scoring nine in all competitions, although he has now gone six games without scoring. His exploits have also earned him his first call-ups to the Italian national team, for whom he scored on his debut against Malta.

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