Eyebrows were raised early in the week, when Manchester United released their squad names for their USA tour and goalkeeper Victor Valdes was conspicuously absent.
United gave no indication while the former Barcelona No.1 was not traveling with the team, but it has came out that United boss Louis van Gaal sacked Valdes for refusing to play for Manchester United reserves and was told to find another club.
In a press conference in the U.S., van Gaal lifted the lid on the situation with Valdes saying:
“He is not selected because he does not follow our philosophy.
“When that is the case, there is not a place for a player. It is about match rhythm.
“Last season he refused to play in the second team and there are other aspects you need as a keeper at United.
“When you are not willing to follow those principles, there is only one way and that is out.”
Van Gaal clearly views Valdes attitude as a kick in the teeth after he invited him to complete his successful rehabilitation from a serious knee injury with United – and then handed him an 18 month contract in January when there were suggestions he was being lined up to take over as No 1 if David De Gea had moved to Real Madrid.
Valdes did play three times for the reserves, against Liverpool, Chelsea and Tottenham, when he first came back from injury in the first three months of the year but it is understood to have refused to play towards the end of the season.
Van Gaal added: “It is a big disappointment, we thought that he would follow our philosophy.
“It is a pity because we have given him the opportunity to rehabilitate, gave him a contract and then he is fit to play.