Manchester United will still manage to attract the best players in the world even if they don’t qualify for the Champions League this season, according to manager Louis van Gaal.
United can close the gap on fourth-placed Manchester City to one point if they beat Tottenham on Sunday, but another season without top European football would not go down well at Old Trafford.
However, the Dutchman insists that failure to secure a place in the Champions League won’t stop United spending in the summer.
“Playing in the Champions League is very important for players,” he told reporters. “But I also think that Manchester United are big enough to attract top players.
“Qualifying for the Champions League would help me when I am speaking to players in the summer. It always helps.
“But I want to stress that Manchester United are such a big club, and our salaries are so good here, that players will come here even if we don’t qualify for the Champions League.”
Van Gaal won’t give up the chase for a top four spot though, insisting that United will push their rivals all the way.
“If Manchester City win all their games then we cannot close the gap — and the same is true with Arsenal,” he added.
“Those teams have to lose before we can catch them, but it is definitely possible. But first we have to beat Tottenham and that is difficult.
“But can we beat them? Yes, we are able to do that because we have beaten the other top team in this league.”