Manchester United – Chelsea will decide title next season – Shaw

The Red Devils fell to a 1-0 defeat at Stamford Bridge but the defender believes his side are moving in the right direction, while rejecting talk of a rift with Louis van Gaal

Luke Shaw believes Manchester United’s clash with Chelsea next season will be a title decider after the Blues ran out 1-0 winners at Stamford Bridge on Saturday.

Eden Hazard’s goal left Jose Mourinho’s side on the verge of claiming the Premier League title, but United remain in the hunt for a second-placed finish.

Louis van Gaal’s side sit just a point behind Arsenal, though the Gunners do have a game in hand by virtue of their FA Cup exploits.

Shaw impressed during the defeat to Chelsea, with his marauding runs down the left causing a number of problems for the Blues defence, and he was delighted with the display from both a personal and team perspective.

“You have seen what [Louis van Gaal] has turned United into in recent weeks, but that is because there is a really focused side, where you have to give 100 per cent in every training session and game and be focused all the time,” he is quoted as saying by the Daily Mirror.

“If you don’t give that, he won’t play you and that’s what he is like. You have seen the results of recent weeks, we keep improving and we want that continue so that we can come out firing next season.

“Will this be a title decider next season? Yeah, you could say that.”

Shaw believes his performance against Chelsea was his best since joining the club from Southampton last summer, while he has also rejected talk that he was criticised by Van Gaal because of his lack of fitness.

 “I wouldn’t say it has been a hard three weeks, but it has been a three weeks that I have been able to learn a lot more about myself, so it has been a nice three weeks in that respect and it was good to get on the pitch again,” he said.

“I’d like to think [it was my best performance for United]. I felt really good on the pitch. I got forward a lot, but I think everyone was brilliant and we could have got something.

“I haven’t been playing and there have been a lot of negative comments about me. It is something that isn’t nice and I’ve tried to ignore it, but hopefully this is the start of me coming back.

“This will give me confidence, of course. I saw a comment the other day saying I was taken off at half-time against Arsenal because I wasn’t fit enough, but that’s not true at all.

“This is coming from me and I know what the manager pulled me off for and it wasn’t for my fitness because I could have carried on in the game.

“I spoke with the manager about it. I felt my back a little bit and he just wanted to be careful because I am young and hopefully have a long future ahead of me. It wasn’t anything about my fitness at all.”

He added: “I have family and friends who are helping me on my journey and the manager as well has been unbelievable as well.

“Over the last three weeks, I have learned a lot from him and credit goes to him for trusting me in a big game like Chelsea.

“[Van Gaal] has two sides to him, but he is genuinely a really nice guy and a great manager.”

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