Following the announcement of his testimonial this summer, Michael Carrick has spoken exclusively to ESPN about his relationship with Louis van Gaal and how Manchester United have changed since the Dutchman left.
Why do teams play well? Why do they not? You can look into all sorts of reasons — is it mentality, tactics? There are so many things. If you are drilled into playing a certain way, as we were for the last couple of years, there was a real structure to it and you just get into the habit of playing that way. That is good, because it shows that the manager has you playing that way, how he wanted it, but it’s not always easy to snap in and out of ways of playing.
Jose is now getting his way and philosophy into the team and that is the job of a manager and why it is tough, when teams chop and change their managers, for players to adjust from one philosophy to another.
Before United failed to finish in the top four, but while it looked very likely, Carrick and Wayne Rooney had a meeting with the manager to discuss their concerns.
We just spoke to him as the senior players, to have a conversation to say that everyone wanted to be better. We weren’t having a great time in terms of results and it happens to a lot of teams, but you just have to do something about it.
It was a fair conversation, nobody went in there fighting or anything, and it wasn’t really a big deal. It probably sounded like a big deal, but it happens all the time at clubs all over the country.
Sometimes a manager will pull you aside in training or in his office, but it just so happened that me and Wayne went to chat to him. It got built up to quite a big thing, but that’s just the way it is.