“It is a bit disrespectful when people say the lads aren’t trying for the manager,” said Carrick. “That hurts us – it’s not the type of people we are.”
The United vice-captain added: “We haven’t won games and it is fair enough if people criticise things that have gone wrong on the pitch.
“It is a horrible run, and it is a horrible feeling. It hurts badly.
“The run we’ve been on is just not good enough. We can’t hide from it, we’re not going to hide from it. That is how it is and we all need to be better.”
United have lost four successive competitive matches for the first time since November 1961, and their winless streak of seven games – which has seen them knocked out of the Champions League and slip out of the top four in the Premier League – is their worst run since the 1989-90 season.
Van Gaal’s side face Chelsea at Old Trafford on Monday, with midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger available again after returning from a three-match suspension.
The Dutchman admitted it would be hard to lift his players for the game against Chelsea.
“When you lose four matches in a row it’s much more difficult,” said Van Gaal.
But asked whether he thought the players still believed in him, the 64-year-old added: “Until now, I can say ‘yes’.”
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger is keen to strengthen in central midfield after Francis Coquelin and Santi Cazorla suffered
serious knee injuries,
while Aaron Ramsey and Mikel Arteta have also had spells on the sidelines.
However, Elneny is seen by Wenger as a long-term part of the squad and not merely a stop-gap, were he to join the north Londoners.
Wilshere out until at least February
The Gunners boss has also admitted he is unsure when Jack Wilshere will return to action, but it will not be before February at the earliest.
The England midfielder was expected to be out for three months when he
had surgery in September
on a hairline fracture of his left leg, but that estimate has now been extended.
“I said February but honestly I don’t know,” Wenger said when pushed on the timescale, as his side aim to respond positively to their 4-0 Premier League defeat at Southampton when they host Bournemouth on Monday.
“I let him do his recovery. It’s going slowly. Once he goes again, goes outside to train, once he is back again into sharp, hard work physically, you count five or six weeks, so at the moment he is not there yet.
“(Wilshere) will not be back before February, that’s for sure. It’s not Jack’s fault we lost at Southampton and anyway he cannot play against Bournemouth. We have short-term worries and we want to respond.”
BBC Sport’s football expert Mark Lawrenson is pitting his wits against a different guest each week this season.
Lawro’s opponent for this weekend’s Premier League fixtures is BBC Match of the Day commentator Guy Mowbray.
Mowbray has predicted five draws on a tight Bank Holiday Monday but has backed Manchester City to beat title rivals Leicester.
Lawro is also up against a state-of-the-art super-computer called SAM (Sports Analytics Machine) for the second week running.
Our scoring system has changed this season and a correct result (picking a win, draw or defeat) is now worth 10 points. The exact score earns 40 points.
On Boxing Day SAM
predicted three correct results, plus two perfect scores , to register an impressive 110 points – equal top on the guest leaderboard!
SAM – built by Professor Ian McHale, Dr Georgi Boshnakov and Tarak Kharrat from the Centre for Sports Business at the University of Salford – pipped Lawro, who picked four correct results and one perfect score to score 80 points .
Who will come out on top this time around? Is man better than machine? Is anyone better than a commentator?
Premier League predictions – Week 19
Crystal Palace v Swansea
Everton v Stoke
Norwich v Aston Villa
Watford v Tottenham
West Brom v Newcastle
Arsenal v Bournemouth
Man Utd v Chelsea
West Ham v Southampton
Leicester v Man City
Sunderland v Liverpool
We are keeping a record of the totals for Lawro and his guests (below), and showing a table of how the Premier League would look if all of Lawro’s predictions were correct (at the bottom of the page).
Make your own predictions now, compare them to Lawro and other fans and try to take your team to the top of the leaderboard by playing
the BBC Sport Predictor game.
All kick-offs 15:00 GMT unless otherwise stated
Crystal Palace v Swansea
The thing with these games around Christmas is always the quick turnaround. Will sides rotate their teams, move players around? There will be one or two knocks and niggles in every team and Crystal Palace look to be suffering more than most.
Yannick Bolasie is out
and he is a massive loss. He is such a good player and supplier, and he is a beast of a man. He’s very difficult to stop, he unhinges defences.
Swansea’s win over West Brom will do them the power of good and they can go and nick a point. They still haven’t got a manager but they just needed a game where they got a bit of luck and they did that on Boxing Day.
Lawro’s prediction: 1-1
Guy Mowbray’s prediction: “Alan Curtis must have conjured up a tremendous effort from his ailing Swans to get their Boxing Day win against West Brom, but I’ve got to back the other Alan in this one. I’d fancy Pardew’s Palace to beat almost anyone at the moment. 2-0.”
I was at St James’ Park on Boxing Day and Everton just about deserved the win at Newcastle. The thing for Roberto Martinez now is that he can change a game from the bench. He was able to bring on Leon Osman, Gerard Deulofeu and Muhamed Besic and still had Arouna Kone unused, with Phil Jagielka to come back.
At Newcastle Aaron Lennon and Kevin Mirallas played and this is probably the strongest squad Martinez has had at Goodison. But they have drawn a lot of games and they need to start winning, starting here.
Stoke had an outstanding result against Manchester United but away from home they don’t get enough goals for me.
After beating Manchester United Norwich may have put up more resistance at Tottenham but they were swatted away after a bright start. Now at home, this could be their biggest game of the season because they can get further away from Aston Villa and get up amongst the pack.
Villa can’t get three points, they don’t create enough chances and lack a goalscorer. Villa are already nine points adrift and we will know by the personnel they sign in January whether they honestly believe they can get out of it or not. Anyone they do bring in will have to be with a view to playing in the Championship if they do get relegated. Or is it a case of when? Would someone like Charlie Austin sign for Villa next month? I don’t think so.
They will keep going, they will not throw the towel in but they have such a lack of quality it’s obvious what will happen to them. We have seen teams turn it around dramatically, look at Leicester last year, but Villa just do not look like scoring at all. They have no goals in them.
Lawro’s prediction: 2-0
Guy Mowbray’s prediction: “A must-win game for both teams, but you couldn’t guarantee it with either at the moment. Villa are showing a bit of resilience under their new manager. Enough to get a point? 1-1.”
Watford are in danger of stealing Leicester’s limelight, they have a real goal threat and are one of a few teams playing 4-4-2. But they have picked up more points away from home then at home this season.
Tottenham are looking good but the way the league is now, if you win three games people start talking about the title! It happened with Liverpool the other week. Tottenham won’t win the league but they do look like Champions League contenders. They have only lost two games but they draw too many. They look like signing a striker in January in case Harry Kane falls over and that could be a shrewd move.
I saw Newcastle on Boxing Day and they look like they might just have enough to avoid relegation, but that’s about it. The players are playing for the manager, there’s no doubt about that and they got stuck in against Everton. They should have got a point.
But I can see West Brom will go and do a job on them, it’s what they are particularly good at. Tony Pulis has always been excellent at pigeonholing results, he will have forgotten about the Boxing Day defeat at Swansea and they will be ready to go, and to win.
Arsenal always let you down and it happened again at Southampton. They just didn’t appear.
Arsenal were bullied by Southampton, they had no answer to Shane Long’s pace and capitulated towards the end. It looked a game too far for some of the players, which is worrying, but even on a bad day they will create chances. With the players they have got Arsenal should be favourites to win the league from here but the problem is they always throw in a Southampton type result.
In a normal season you would worry for their chances but in this season of flux, of change, of inconsistency they will probably get away with it.
I love the spirit of Bournemouth and the way that they don’t change the way they play for anybody. They run their hearts out every game. They won’t get a result at the Emirates though.
Lawro’s prediction: 2-0
Guy Mowbray’s prediction: “Sorry Cherries, but there has to be an Arsenal response to what happened on the south coast on Boxing Day, and you might cop it. 3-0.”
I’ve never known such a fuss about a game where both sides are so poor. If you look at the history of the Premier League this should be one of the games of the season but instead it will be dull, dull, dull.
Louis van Gaal’s problem now is that he has no defence. Literally. When he came in he said that he would make Manchester United difficult to beat but right now everyone is rolling them over. It’s a strange situation. Jose Mourinho is in the background but is he really a Manchester United manager? I can’t see it.
How will Van Gaal play this game? He will be safety first, everyone will sit in and they can’t really buy a goal at the moment. He is not playing well at the moment but Wayne Rooney will have to come back in, why you would drop him for a game like Stoke away I have no idea.
The Van Gaal story will roll on and on but this looks like a bore draw to me.
Lawro’s prediction: 1-1
Guy Mowbray’s prediction: “I never predict goalless draws, but how could you go with anything else on both clubs’ current (lack of) form? As I’m at the game, I hope they ram this back in my face with a five or six goal thriller! 0-0.”
Southampton looked like they had had the hurry-up from Ronald Koeman when they thrashed Arsenal on Boxing Day night. They have been a bit too nice and very inconsistent but the Arsenal game was a significant win. They convinced themselves that they need to be nasty in footballing parlance, more bullish.
West Ham have drawn their last five and are without some key players and are just nursing their way through until Dimitri Payet and Diafra Sakho are back fit. They will be fine this season but I can see the Saints rolling them over.
Leicester have done fantastically but when you are top of the league you are a massive target and we saw that at Anfield on Boxing Day, where the atmosphere was lifted by Leicester’s visit. The Foxes have been surfing a wave all season but waves die down eventually. We will have a better indication in a couple of weeks where exactly they can finish. Claudio Ranieri has got every single player in the team playing above themselves. That’s what a proper manager can do.
Manchester City are without Vincent Kompany again
and it is sheer bad luck. Manuel Pellegrini did everything right, bringing him on when they were cruising through a game with no problems and he injured his calf yet again. It sounds really bad for him.
It may be time for surgery on it, to have a look inside and see what’s what. That’s a real blow for them but I think they will go and win at Leicester.
Lawro’s prediction: 1-2
Guy Mowbray’s prediction: “Jamie Vardy and Riyad Mahrez to get one each, whilst a fit-again Sergio Aguero might get more than one. Game of the week. Game of the season? 2-3.”
SAM’s prediction: 1-1
Sunderland v Liverpool (19:45 GMT)
Sunderland lack consistency – Allardyce
Big Sam’s quotes
after the defeat at Manchester City were interesting. He has clearly had a look at everybody and he now knows what he needs to bring in during the transfer window. Defensively they are all over the shop. I am sure that when Allardyce took the job he will have told the chairman that he will need “X amount” of money in January.
For clubs now, the riches of every season in the top flight are so vast that it makes sense to invest £40m or so in the window if they can stay up. It’s a no-brainer. He will be busy.