Van Gaal says De Gea omitted because of ‘minor injury’
David De Gea was left out of Man United’s 1-0 pre-season win over Club America because he had a "minor injury", according to Louis van Gaal.
Reserve goalkeepers Anders Lindegaard and Sam Johnstone played 45 minutes each in Saturday’s International Champions Cup clash as speculation continues to mount over the future of the club’s first-choice number one.
It is understood that United are resigned to losing de Gea, if not this summer then next, but van Gaal insists he was left out due to a knock picked up in training.
He also explained Antonio Valencia had a small injury and Marouanne Fellaini, who was sent off against Hull on the final day of the season, was rested.
Van Gaal said: "De Gea and Valenica were injured with minor injuries. We cannot take any risks in the preparation.
"Fellaini is suspended for the first three matches so he has a longer time to prepare himself and I need to see other players."
Morgan Schneiderlin scored the only goal of the game five minutes into his Manchester United debut, while Memphis Depay, Matteo Darmian and Bastian Schweinsteiger all featured.
But van Gaal said he was not happy about the state of the pitch at Seattle’s CenturyLink Field, where a One Direction concert was held just 48 hours before the game.
"The pitch was not good. It was difficult," he added.
"The first surface is artificial with natural grass over it. It was always moving so you have seen that a lot of players were [slipping].
"It is always moving. You have seen a lot of players were… It is not so easy. You can get more and more injuries. It was a big concern."
An official from the Sounders admitted the turf may have been laid before the sell-out One Direction concert took place at the 67,000-seater venue on Wednesday night.
Van Gaal feels organisers of the International Champions Cup have failed to provide adequate playing surfaces for his team for the last two seasons.
"It was also (like that) last season against Real Madrid," said Van Gaal, referencing United’s pre-season match in Ann Arbor last summer.
"We also played (there) in such circumstances. That is the difference in the USA.
"In American Football that kind of stuff is more important. In England we have Old Trafford and it is only for football. No One Direction entertainment. That is the difference.
"But in England we live for football. Here they live for American Football, baseball and basketball. It is different."
The surface was nothing like the ones the Seahawks have provided for United at their training base in Bellevue this week.
Van Gaal said: "The training facilities are fantastic.
"We have been really well received by Seattle Seahawks and also the football club.
"Everybody is fantastic. The pitches are fantastic. We have to play football on such a pitch. Tonight we could not play on such a pitch. "That is a pity because the ball and the pitch are very important."