Manchester United great Denis Irwin is convinced Louis van Gaal will return the club to winning ways despite a slow start in the top flight.
United lost 2-1 to Swansea City in Van Gaal's first Premier League game in charge - dampening some of the initial optimism that had surrounded the Dutchman's reign at Old Trafford.
After a woeful campaign under David Moyes last time out, United had looked in good form during their close-season preparations and will be eager to restore the feel-good factor when they face Sunderland on Sunday.
Irwin - who won seven league titles, three FA Cups and the UEFA Champions League during his 12-year stay at Old Trafford - has no doubts Van Gaal will bring the best out of United's squad this season.
"We had a fantastic pre-season, we played some real top teams across in America and beat Real Madrid, Liverpool and Roma, so there was a huge amount of optimism around Manchester United since Louis van Gaal took over and one result shouldn't spoil that," he told Perform.
"We didn't play well [against Swansea], the result wasn't great, obviously not a great start, particularly at home, but there's a long way to go.
"The manager has only had the players a month or so, he's still getting his ideas across. Eventually we will get better and better with more preparation time because unfortunately we are not involved in Europe this year.
"In hindsight that might be a good thing. We saw what Liverpool achieved last season with a bit more rest so I still have huge optimism for this season, I really have."
Van Gaal added Argentina international Marcos Rojo to his squad in midweek - joining recent recruits Ander Herrera and Luke Shaw at Old Trafford.
However, the former Netherlands coach has not been involved in a flurry of transfer activity and handed starts to young pair Tyler Blackett and Jesse Lingard last week.
Irwin, who played alongside stars of the much-vaunted 'Class of '92', feels United fans should be buoyed by the inclusion of fresh talent in Van Gaal's starting teams.
"We've always had players come through from the academy. We were blessed in the '90s with so many coming through at one time," he continued.
"You know, [Ryan] Giggs, the two [Gary and Phil] Nevilles, [David] Beckham, [Paul] Scholes I could go on and on. Danny Welbeck is still there or thereabouts coming through. He's been one of our main players in the last few years.
"We've always had young players coming through so hopefully that trend will continue and it's great that the manager will look at everybody and not be afraid to throw young players in there."
|Bayern Munich 1 Cologne 0: Lewandowski opens nine-point gap in Bundesliga|
|Mourinho slams Manchester derby penalty decision in programme notes|
|This is my last season at Monaco – Fabinho|
|Bale: Football would be better without VAR|
|Thought Mayweather v McGregor was 2017´s biggest sporting event? Think again!|
|Manchester United´s Gomes pens professional contract|
|Al Jazira 1 Real Madrid 2: Bale spares Spanish blushes at Club World Cup|
|Ronaldo takes goalscoring record from Messi|
|Al Jazira stun Real Madrid to take half-time lead in Club World Cup|
|Neymar returns to PSG after break|
|Iniesta would welcome Barca pursuit of Coutinho|
|FA extends deadline for Manchester clubs to respond over alleged derby fracas|
|Dybala clever enough to listen to Nedved - Buffon|
|Willian not ready to walk out on Chelsea|
|Arsenal striker Lacazette not counting on title miracle|
|World Cup glory worth €350,000 to Germany stars|
|I live day by day - Buffon ponders Euro 2020|
|West Ham eyeing Wilshere swoop in January|
|Klopp reveals hamstring scare for Liverpool star Salah|
|FFA refuses to speculate on Scolari amid Socceroos interest|
|Ronaldo hoping to play with Benzema and Bale again|
|Mourinho takes aim at reporters as Man United boss leaves news conference|
|´Bull****´ to suggest Chelsea can catch Man City – Conte|
|Pordenone would´ve deserved Coppa Italia progression, admits Spalletti|
|Man City haven´t won anything yet – Gundogan|
|Willian: Chelsea will keep fighting for Premier League title|
|Burnley aren´t the real deal – Dyche|
|Stoger wants to bring best out of BVB after breakthrough victory|
|Conte praises contribution of Hazard, Willian and Pedro|
|Inter 0 Pordenone 0 (AET, 5-4 on penalties): Nagatomo spares Serie A leaders´ blushes|
|Hodgson keeping Palace grounded despite dramatic late win|
|Zouma injury led to Turf Moor defeat – Hughes|
|Guardiola steers carefully around Mourinho criticism after United v City flashpoint|
|Guardiola considering January signings to bolster Manchester City squad|
|Crystal Palace 2 Watford 1: Sako, McArthur stun Hornets|
|Huddersfield Town 1 Chelsea 3: Willian sparkles as Conte´s side return to winning ways|
|Burnley 1 Stoke City 0: Hosts go fourth after late Barnes winner|
|PSG escape punishment as LFP gives Lille transfer ban|
|Mainz 0 Borussia Dortmund 2: Stoger´s tenure begins with much-needed victory|
|Ten Cate: Al Jazira will park three buses against Real Madrid|
|Gremio 1 Pachuca 0 (after extra time): Everton stunner sends Brazilians into final|
|Zidane focused on Club World Cup despite looming Clasico|
|Ibrahimovic brands Guardiola ´immature´ over Barcelona row|
|Pogba has no regrets over rejecting Real Madrid|
|Gattuso denies contract rift with AC Milan goalkeeper Donnarumma|
|Pochettino: Alderweireld out until February|
|Wydad Casablanca 2 Urawa Red Diamonds 3: Marvellous Mauricio double proves decisive|
|Cardona given five-match ban for ´discriminatory´ gesture against South Korea|
|James still settling at Bayern, says Heynckes|
|Manchester City captain Kompany out for ´a short time´|
|Klopp: Liverpool need Lallana ahead of busy period|
|It was diversity in education – Mourinho addresses derby fracas|
|I encourage City to celebrate - Guardiola defends players after Old Trafford controversy|
|I´m no actor – No regrets for Klopp over heated interview|
|Everton were like United at Liverpool - Allardyce defends Anfield approach|
|Paulo Bento hired as Chongqing Lifan head coach|
|Ramsey hamstring injury ´not a big one´|
|Watford´s Zeegelaar gets three-match ban as appeal is rejected|
|Matthaus raves about Spurs star Kane|
|´Several clubs´ discussing Arda move as Barca exit nears|
|No ultimatum as Arsenal´s Ozil and Sanchez talks rumble on|
|Su-Mourinho? Wenger offers advice to City and United|
|Bayern planning ´serious talks´ with Robben, Ribery|
|Pereira replaces Villas-Boas at Shanghai SIPG|
|Van Gaal rejected Leverkusen to hold out for a ´big club´|
|Inzaghi and Lazio left feeling ´defrauded´ after Torino defeat|
|Man United more boring under Mourinho, claims Van Gaal|
|Zidane: Real Madrid want to win Club World Cup|
|Morata ruled out of Huddersfield trip due to ´impossible´ workload|
|Valverde singles out Hazard & Morata as chief Chelsea threats|
|Lazio 1 Torino 3: Inzaghi´s men lose ground as Immobile sees red|
|Reading 2 Cardiff City 2: Late comeback makes light of Warnock dismissal|
|Wagner received no contact over Borussia Dortmund job|
|A Mourinho myth? Man United booked for simulation more than any Premier League side|
|Ronaldo´s ego is his biggest motivator - Valdano|
|Bayern threaten legal action over Leno transfer rumours|
|Potter delighted by underdog Ostersunds´ trip to Arsenal|
|Chelsea can bounce back from West Ham loss, says Conte|
|Real Madrid will relish PSG test, says Xabi Alonso|
|Conte urges Chelsea to be ´positive´ over Barca Champions League draw|
|Heynckes wary of Besiktas threat|
|Ostersunds handed fairytale Arsenal tie, Napoli face Leipzig|
|Emery: PSG ´can compete with Real Madrid´|
|Totti urges Roma focus on Serie A despite encouraging Champions League draw|
|Europa League: Last 32 draw in full|
|Messi faces toughest foe in Champions League|
|AC Milan signed too many players, admits Fassone|
|Real Madrid face PSG, Chelsea drawn with Barcelona|
|FA seeking information over Manchester derby incident|
|He is one of the best strikers in the Premier League - Wilshere hails Giroud|
|Mata: No time to mourn derby defeat|
|Hitzfeld tells Nagelsmann to honour Hoffenheim contract|
|Amor: Mascherano future to become clear soon|
|Huddersfield confident of Chelsea scalp - Ince|
|De Bruyne: Man City have to enjoy derby victory|
|There is no-one like Messi – Alcacer|
|Kane: Bring on the best in Champions League|
|Neville: Lukaku needs to believe amid Man United struggles|
|Messi best player of all time – Rakitic|
|Gattuso: I´m even tense playing football with my son|
|Suarez admits Villarreal red swung it for Barcelona|
|Villarreal win ´crucial´ for Barcelona boss Valverde|