Despite the uncertainty surrounding Louis van Gaal’s future, the Dutchman seems set to keep as his post at Manchester United for the start of next season’s campaign, with a number of Red’s fans already rallying behind him.
Manchester United season tickets are selling-out at a record-breaking rate – amidst the uncertainty around the club, it seems that Van Gaal style of play has not dissuaded fans from flocking to Old Trafford.
United’s PR and ticketing teams have been pushing a promotional campaign to get United’s support on board for next the forthcoming season; current season ticket holders have been receiving emails, phone calls, social media alerts and incentives like a limited edition club scarf if they agree to renew their ticket early.
The club’s renewal brochure, which prominently features Louis van Gaal on the front cover in addition to an open letter from the manager to the fans, was sent out to United’s 55,000 season ticket holders.
Inside, Van Gaal made his pitch to the Manchester United supporters, urging them to rally behind his troops:
“There is no doubt in my mind that Manchester United has the best fans in the world, and the relationship between the team and the fans is very special.
“It is utmost ambition to bring success to this club and, for you, the loyal season ticket holders who support the team week in, week out.”
Louis Van Gaal
Critical analysts expected that Van Gaal holding his seat at Old Trafford would damage ticket sales and that the installation of Jose Mourinho as his successor would spark a rush.
However, club sources have expressed that season ticket renewals currently exceed those of last season, where season tickets for the 2015-16 campaign sold out in record time.
United initially put back the renewal deadline after reaching the FA Cup final, sparking rumours that the strategy was to encourage an avalanche of subscriptions with the expectation that United were set to announce their new manager.
Van Gaal’s prevalence in the marketing material suggests that the eccentric coach will remain in charge next season. The rush for season tickets suggests that United fans haven’t been deterred by what’s been described as a ‘boring style’ of football played inside Old Trafford this year.
Sceptics have argued that the clubs statements about ticket sales may need to be taken with a pinch of salt.
United’s fans stayed away from the home fixture against Crystal Palace when there appeared to be far fewer than 60,000 in the stadium, yet the official attendance tallied record breaking figures of 75,000 – the number certainly raised a few eyebrows…