Fresh injury headache for Man Utd’s Louis van Gaal

With the entire season plagued with defensive injuries things are not getting any easier for Manchester United’s Louis van Gaal with Rafael and Luke Shaw both injured in their FA Cup win over Yeovil on Sunday, the BBC is reporting.

Wingbacks Rafael and Luke Shaw had been called into action following injuries to fellow players Ashley Young and Antonio Valencia but came out of the game in similar shape to their colleagues.

Rafael sustained a fractured cheekbone from a particularly heavy challenge while Luke Shaw was unable to continue with what looked like an ankle injury – further disrupting his injury plagued start to life with United.

The pair were withdrawn at half time after both had played on despite their knocks, much to the praise of their manager.

Van Gaal said: “It was a very physical game.

“Rafael has an injury and a fracture of his bone so it was fantastic he had the guts to play through.

“I had to change him and also Luke Shaw because he had an ankle problem. He played on also. Rafael has already gone away in a car to the hospital. I don’t know how he did it. I cannot say. I will have to watch the video. Also, the same with Shaw.”

United have had torrid luck with injuries in the defensive department this season with the likes of Phil Jones, Chris Smalling, Marcus Rojo, Tyler Blackett and Paddy McNair all missing at one stage or another – sometimes through suspension too.

Van Gaal has had to field players such as Michael Carrick as emergency centre backs in a desperate attempt to plug the hole and with all four of his first choice wing backs injured it will be interesting to see how United line up next time out.

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