Van Gaal: Luke Shaw will learn from Under-21s outings

Sunday 19 Oct 2014
Luke Shaw featured for the Under-21s as they beat Croatia over two legs

Louis van Gaal says the return to the Under-21s will be good for Luke Shaw’s long-term development.

Shaw played all 180 minutes for Gareth Southgate’s side in their play-off victories against Croatia.

And the Manchester United boss said his young left-back went with his blessing – despite him being part of Roy Hodgson’s World Cup squad in the summer.

"It is a very good education,” said van Gaal. 

England line-up ahead of Croatia match

Luke Shaw lines up for England Under-21s against Croatia

“I have said that already, when I was national coach. All my players had played in the Under-21s. I think it is not any question, not any discussion."

Van Gaal believes that level of international football is the right one for the youngster's development, even though he tasted senior action at last summer's World Cup.

And the 63-year-old, who has had two spells as Holland national team boss, can see nothing but benefits for the 19-year-old.

"As the trainer of a club I should be very happy that he is playing Under-21s. I am happy he is playing because when he is on the bench.

“For example Adnan Januzaj was on the Belgium bench, he had two weeks' holiday - that is not a benefit.

"Then he can play better Under-21. I think youngsters have to play.

“He needs match rhythm. It was good for me and it was good for Luke.”

Louis van Gaal 

"I was very happy Shaw was playing in the 21s and he himself (was) also. 

“He needs match rhythm. It was good for the national team Under-21s, it was good for me and it was good for Luke."

Next up for Shaw and Manchester United is a trip to the Hawthorns to take on West Bromwich Albion on Monday.

Following that they face testing fixtures against the two title favourites. 

Unbeaten Chelsea travel to Old Trafford on 26 October, before Shaw and van Gaal get their first taste of a Manchester derby on Sunday 2 November.

By Jamie Reid Senior Writer