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Daley Blind has defended Louis van Gaal following his departure from Manchester United.
Missing out on Champions League football proved to be Van Gaal's undoing as he was sacked on Monday evening, just two days after guiding the club to the FA Cup, their first piece of silverware since 2013.
Having played under him at the 2014 World Cup, Blind was one of Van Gaal's first signings when he was appointed United manager and be has defended his fellow Dutchman by suggesting he was not treated fairly during the final six months of his tenure.
"I always worked well with him and would have been keen that the co-operation lasted longer," Blind told reporters.
"The manager of a top club in England is naturally under much more pressure, but over the last six months he has not been treated fairly. I think a manager like Louis van Gaal, who has achieved so much already, deserved more respect.
"Even though there was so much being written about him losing his job over the last months, he always looked to protect and shelter us. It is not easy for a coach if you are repeatedly being fired in the newspapers."
United are expected to appoint Jose Mourinho as their new manager in the coming days and Blind knows he will have to work hard to prove himself to Van Gaal's successor.
"If it is true that Jose Mourinho is coming, then it is also a manager who has achieved much," he said.
"I will have to show what I can do. Personally I can look back on a good season in which I played 57 matches plus a few internationals."