Van Gaal’s men, who slumped to their fifth scoreless draw over their past nine matches on Saturday, face a complicated midweek trip to Wolfsburg, where only a win will see the Old Trafford club advance to the knockout stage of Europe’s top club competition.
Should they do the business in Germany, however, Van Gaal doesn’t believe his side are good enough to end the tournament as champions.
“I don’t think that we are able to win the Champions League now,” Van Gaal said on Saturday. “Maybe next year when we strengthen our selection again. But now we have to come as much as possible and maybe we can beat everyone, that I am sure.
“And we have proven that already, also in the Premier League. But normally we are not good enough to win the Champions League. You can win, and when we are there we shall try to do everything but you also have to be realistic. I’m happy with my squad now but we can strengthen the selection still in [certain] positions, for example the left-back position is not so [well] covered.”
Not entirely pessimistic about his team, the Dutchman said he likes United’s chances of getting the valuable result against the Bundesliga side.
“Yes, yes we can win,” said Van Gaal. “Because we have also won at home [against Wolfsburg]. It was also a difficult match. But I know that also Wolfsburg shall not attack too much because with a draw, they continue and we are dependent on PSV.
“Every match, we have chances and, in our European matches, we have created more chances than in the Premier League matches, I believe. We have to score in Wolfsburg.
“We have to play against a very good team. I am convinced we can do it but we do not have any luck. Also, we have to be more composed in that situation — especially when you miss chances three metres in front of goal.”