Shinji Kagawa opens up on way Louis van Gaal ended his Man Utd career

Former Manchester United ace Shinji Kagawa has opened up on his Old Trafford exit having left the club in 2014.

Kagawa signed from Borussia Dortmund in 2012, under Sir Alex Ferguson, but returned to the Bundesliga side just two years later.

The Japanese midfielder did make an impact with the Red Devils, scoring a Premier League hat-trick against Norwich.

He made 20 appearances in the league as United won the title in 2012-13 with that being Ferguson’s final season in charge.

But the next 12 months were times of upheaval at Old Trafford with David Moyes coming and going before Ryan Giggs took caretaker charge.

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And when Louis van Gaal came in as the next permanent manager, the Dutch boss had no plans for Kagawa.

“There was another change of manager [when Moyes was sacked]," Kagawa told The Athletic.

“It would have been difficult for anyone. Ferguson had been there for so long and everyone knew how he worked. He kept adding small parts like new players.

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“It would have been easier for Moyes if we had carried on winning. Maybe we expected to, but when we didn’t the confidence began to drop.

“[When Moyes and Giggs had come and gone] I was now in my fourth manager in just over two years. I joined a club with the same manager for 25 years and then they had Moyes, Giggs and van Gaal.

“I did not play well in the World Cup finals in Brazil. Japan were bottom and eliminated.

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“I felt I needed a new challenge to help me get back to my best. Maybe that could have been in Manchester, but then Angel Di Maria and Radamel Falcao arrived.

"That only made my situation worse.

“I knew it was time for me to leave Manchester after two years when Van Gaal said to me: ‘Shinji, you are not going to play as much for me.'"

Kagawa now plays in the Spanish second division for Real Zaragoza, scoring just two league goals this season.

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