Louis van Gaal, trainingGetty

'When things go bad in Barcelona, people look for foreigners to blame' - Van Gaal defends Koeman, De Jong and Depay

Louis van Gaal feels that it is typical for Barcelona to put the blame on foreigners when results go against them, amid criticism of Ronald Koeman, Frenkie de Jong and Memphis Depay.

The Netherlands boss has ridden to the defence of the trio, as they continue to shoulder the brunt of dissatisfaction at Camp Nou following a tough start to the new campaign.

Speaking ahead of his side's final game of the October international break, the veteran manager has weighed in on the matter - and feels it is nothing new for them to be made scapegoats.

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What has been said?

“Frenkie de Jong, criticised?” Van Gaal mooted when asked about the attitude towards his countrymen at club level.

“It's typical [at] Barcelona. When you have the great contributions he's had in the past two years, there's not too much to worry about.

“[But] when things go bad, people in Barcelona always look for the foreigners [to blame].”

Van Gaal hails Depay impact

Elsewhere, the 70-year-old took the time to offer further praise for Depay at international level, highlighting how his work rate builds up his results.

“When I look at the data from Memphis, I’ve never had a striker like this,” he added.

“Someone who runs so much, goes deep so many times and gets into the ball so much. That’s commendable.”

The bigger picture

While his players may be catching the ire of Blaugrana fans at club level, they have delivered a strong campaign across their Qatar 2022 World Cup qualifiers so far.

With seven games gone, they sit atop Group G, just ahead of Norway, and are looking to secure their place at next year's tournament.

They face Gibraltar to round off the October international break, with a victory set to ensure they remain at least two points clear at the summit.

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