Manchester United defender Guillermo Varela has insisted that his relationship with Louis van Gaal is a good one and feels that the manager has faith in him.

The Uruguayan right-back has been catapulted into the first-team picture recently, after injuries to backup options Antonio Valencia and Ashley Young.

Varela has made four appearances for the Red Devils this season, most recently against Derby County in the FA Cup last week, but was linked with a loan move to Serie A side Genoa before the end of the January transfer window.

However, the 22-year-old is happy with life at Old Trafford and feels that van Gaal is giving him a clear indication of what his role is at the club.

Clive Mason/Getty Images Sport

In an interview with Uruguay paper Ovacion, he said:

At my age, it is essential to have more minutes, but I know it’s good that the coach wants to count on me.

The rumours say there is always some kind of problem with the South Americans. If I tell you the truth, I have had none. When we’ve had to talk it has been clear and stayed at that.

He [van Gaal] has a difficult personality. Sometimes it is not so easy for the players. For players used to working with Ferguson, that has been hard to take. The truth is his exit is still felt a lot. There as before and after.

Denis Doyle/Getty Images Sport

Varela also looked back at his loan spell with Castilla, Real Madrid’s reserve side last season, and compared the experience of playing in the second division of Spanish football with the football at under-21 level in England:

That year [at Castilla] was a learning experience and gave me confidence. I have to be grateful for the support I got. I wish him [Zinedine Zidane] the best in charge at Real.

Castilla is something different, playing in the Segunda Division or Segunda B, and you have a lot of pressure. They treat you like you are a first team player and that’s impressive.

Here in Manchester, the reserves are totally different. The league in which they play is not very good, and more about development. It is very good for the kids who are growing up, but when you reach a certain age it is not so much use to you.

Steve Bardens/Getty Images Sport

Finally, Varela believes that he has improved as a player at the Theatre of Dreams:

Maybe before I doubted what to do, but now I am able to take the right decisions [on the pitch].

The article mentions that Varela’s representatives have been negotiating a new deal for the right-back, so United fans could well be seeing the Uruguayan at the club for a while yet. He has certainly impressed in his fleeting appearances in a red shirt so far, and it wouldn’t be a surprise if he has earned himself an improved contract.