Woodward: Van Gaal will make United an attacking force
Much of United's glittering success over the past two decades has been built on the club's attacking philosophy, but David Moyes, Van Gaal's Old Trafford predecessor, was pragmatic during his ill-fated 10 months in charge.
United last season missed out on a place in the UEFA Champions League for the first time since 1995-96 and the side's Premier League title defence was pitiful as they finished seventh, some 22 points adrift of champions Manchester City.
Dutchman Van Gaal – who won league titles in Netherlands, Spain and Germany – is now tasking with rebuilding and Woodward thinks the 62-year-old will have no trouble winning over United supporters and will also help develop the next generation of stars.
Speaking at the end of a week in which Van Gaal formally took charge at United, Woodward told MUTV: "He's got incredible energy and very importantly he likes attacking football.
"If you remember the Barcelona team [Van Gaal managed] in the late '90s, who played incredible, attacking football, and those games we had against them in '98-99 [when United won the Champions League], that's the kind of football Manchester United fans love.
"It's part of our DNA.
"The second part of what he likes is giving youth a chance. He's got a track record littered with giving young players a break in the first team, who have gone on to be stars.
"Clearly that's Manchester United's philosophy and we want him to continue with that.
"We've got someone who has confidence in himself about making difficult decisions and, when you boil down what makes a great manager, one of the key characteristics is making difficult decisions and we’ve clearly got a manager who can do that."
Woodward believes Van Gaal has already made a big impact behind the scenes at the former Premier League champions.
He added: "There is real unity in the squad and Louis clearly has something to give in terms of the special way he has with his players when it comes to binding the team together.
"We've seen that already with the steps he's taken with the preparation and the training and the things going on around that.
"He's going to deliver exactly what we expect him to deliver and in conjunction with Ryan [Giggs, United's assistant manager], who has that great understanding of all these players."