Van Gaal revisited?

So, apparently all the other candidates said no. Hiddink was number 1, supposedly and with Cruyff public plea for Rijkaard, one has to expect him to be in the top of the wishlist too. Co Adriaanse was never a real candidate, apparently, and Ruud Gullit was most likely never seen as a serious option.

Louis van Gaal has all the right ticks behind his name, according to some. Experience…? Check. Success as coach? Check. Understands Dutch school football? Check. Dutch nationality? Check!

What the experts at the KNVB overlooked, unfortunately, is Louis’ track record as national coach… No results. Not really effective as figure head. And although the players never speak negatively about him as a club coach, he definitely pissed off the media and the supporters.

His “experience” also shows that he hardly ever leaves a club the normal way. Sure, Ajax 1995 and AZ 2010 were two situations where the expectation levels were low. He was the underdog. But every time he was presented with fanfare and champagne, every time we actually expected him to perform: he imploded. He can’t handle criticism, he can’t handle a board or management looking over his shoulder and he doesn’t know how to look in the mirror.

Louis’ ego has always been the problem.

So while our Oranje team seems to buckle under the pressure of players’ egos, the KNVB decided to put some extra weight on.

Did we forget the two Portugal games, in the 2002 qualifications? Wasn’t it Louis’ ego that helped the Portuguese snatch the key points against us?

And wasn’t it his sensational ego that prompted him to organise a press conference to blame the media about his disastrous results?

And the current KNVB management feels it’s time to give Louis a second chance?


Why not give him the U21s first?

Back in the day: Rinus Michels, Hans Kraay sr and a young but grumpy Van Gaal

“The Dutch team manager needs to be an ambassador for Dutch football.” Apparently the KNVB has reasons to believe Van Gaal has learned from his many mistakes in the past. Based on what exactly?

When Van Gaal got the job in August 2000, he actually promised the nation the World Cup. In those days, he also was the technical director at the KNVB. He basically fired himself? Or he gave himself a resignation letter…

KNVB manager Henk Kesler said: “We know who we put in power,” back then. His successor Bert van Oostveen says something similar now. “A tremendous amount of experience, very dedicated, very driven…” But, this time not a 6 year deal but merely a two year contract, until the 2014 World Cup.

With Van Gaal, we have the return of the last team manager who failed to qualify for a World Cup. Leo Beenhakker was his predecessor.

Holland played 14 internationals under Van Gaal, of which 10 in the World Cup qualification. Right after the Euro2000, Holland drew against Ireland, 2-2, and lost at home in De Kuip against Portugal, as a result of two incidents. One, the infamous line up change, with right back Reiziger as left full back. “He can do that,” Van Gaal said, who missed all his left backs as a result of injuries. Reiziger made a crucial mistake, offering the Portuguese the 0-1. When some idiot blew a whistle, some time later, Davids stopped playing, allowing Figo to steal the ball and prepare the 0-2.

Holland was able to take revenge in Portugal and was 0-2 up when Van Gaal decided to bring more attackers, with only 10 minutes to go. This lack of balance in the team resulted in Portugal equalising. A play off against Ireland was supposed to get us our ticket, but despite big opportunities for Kluivert and Zenden, Ireland won it: 1-0.

Holland didn’t qualify and Louis resigned. Louis played 14, won 8, lost 2 and drew four times.

Van Gaal forgets to win in Portugal: 2-2. The end is nigh…

Danny Blind will be Louis’ assistant. The former Ajax and Oranje libero worked with Van Gaal at Ajax and shares his football vision. When Blind supported Van Gaal’s return to Ajax, Cruyff and Co decided Blind had to leave Ajax.

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  1. i don’t know what to say about this appointment, it’s weird, scary, and at the same time, exciting to see what he can produce.

    His track record is bad, i agree, and i didn’t want him, but he’s here, and he better prove it fast that he’s the one for the team.

  2. Well.. it could be good , it could be bad. And if it is good, I sure hope there would be no extension, cuz eventually and ultimately it would inevitably end up flamboyantly bad with this guy 🙂

    Though, he is tactically more astute BVM, that is for sure, and he will pick the right team and the right formation..
    Feel Willems, Clasie, Strootman, Douglas will be making their mark with Van Gaal soon.

  3. There’s a Chinese saying for over thousand years – when your’re poor and out of all ideas, make changes , and changes could be the only way to leads to success”

  4. Perhaps Hiddink was never even interested in being Hollands coach again.perhaps He’s for money today.

    Van Gaal, he has something that rijkaards doesn’t have – the kind of craziness

  5. I’m quite excited about this – you see, he’s got something to repair for Oranje, he’s respected by the players (or they’ll learn to respect him), he likes playing attacking football. So in my opinion: he’ll rock or he’ll destroy even more – no alternatives!
    But if he does well, the Dutch football will raise again and regain his name! So hope the best and give this guy a (second) chance!

  6. Maybe you should all forget about the 2002 failure for a moment and consider if this isn’t exactly what we all wanted. I’m sure Van Gaal understands Dutch football better than BvM and I’m sure he’s a better tactician. After the fiasco of the euro cup maybe this kind of drastic change is exactly what we need. We have a head coach who is desperate to fix his past mistakes and we are finally returning to the style of football we haven’t seen since 2008.

  7. 2002 is in the past and one can argue that all NT managers except for Michels in 1988 have been failures because they either didn’t qualify for a major competition or didn’t win it when they had the chance (isn’t Michels failure in 1974 the biggest of all time?). I’m not one to put any weight on Van Gaal’s first stint with the NT. As I pointed out yesterday, there really were not any other viable candidates and the next two years of qualification are going to be a transitional phase with some key positions to be filled. Van Gaal has been successful at the club level and is a better tactician than BvM which is what the NT needs. Only time will tell if he is successful and whatever happened in 2002 will not matter one bit.

  8. I just believe that he brings change in the way holland have been playing recently by bringing the right formation.. then easily this team will go ahead.. need to chane so many players with egos and super egos… need to bench huntelaar and vander vaat for a year or so.. only then these players understands what is a team… u need to gel together as a team.. this is something which need to brought under.. need to change the defense.. needto replace heitiga, mathijsen for a future dutch team.. need to get douglas, strootmen and many youngsters in the team.. the team should replace bommel, kyt, huntelaar, van der vaat… need to rest robben for a while only then understands what is team play… need to either bring 4-4-2 or 4-4-3, rather playing defensively by putting extra 2 holding midfielders..
    all thebest

  9. wow people are talking about Van Gaal as if he was an alien from out of space. Common guys, he was not born yesterday, he took Ajax Champions in 1995 (17 years a go!!) that says something about experience. Since then his been club hopping and actually won 2 league titles with two different teams, stupid he isn’t. Of course everybody is afraid about past failures, but I think its fair to say that he is a modern manager that can evolve according to the demands of today’s football. Big clubs are reluctant to sign him because of his attitude and ego which might create a problem with club culture and eventually fans, I’m not even going to touch about his relationship with the media. Don’t forget, Guardiola was in the team that won the double with Van Gaal at the helm, Mourinho also learned something. So there you go, Guardiola and Mourinho (two fierce enemies) learned a thing or two (maybe not all) from our new manager.

  10. i have no idea how it will finish,he can be successfull,he still has the talent,but he can fail as well. i still have some bad feelings in my mind: when he was appointed in 2000 i expected oranje becoming world champions. he had one of the most talented squad in dutch football history to realize our dreams… we know the result,i still remember the portugal game in lisbon and the ireland game in dublin… on the club level,at barca i expected champions’league glory with him. instead the glory valencia humiliated barca in the semis.
    he did a brilliant job with ajax in the 90s,his first year at baxern was sensational.
    very contaversial. probably he was the only one serious candidate for the job,and he’s definitely better than gullit. at least he won’t be afraid of saying the truth to his players. how will they react to him?

  11. You have to admire his success at club level. If he can do for Oranje what he did with Ajax in 95-96 then we could have a great team and possibly win the World Cup.

    I think if we do win a trophy that is the absolute best time to get rid of Van Gaal. Anything after that will be horrific. As much as Van Gaal wins he completely destroys everything before he leaves. It’s best to give him the “quit while you’re still ahead” treatment. I am really eager to see his team choice and formation. Definitely will be interesting…

  12. Oh boy, this is just going downhill…

    I hope I’m wrong, I do, but honestly I don’t see LvG being sucessfull in the tropics two years from now.

    But I reckon these are indeed interesting times. 😉

    Hup Holland Hup!

    1. I agree with you just on the part of “interesting times”.

      And interesting times, require interesting things to do. So we as Oranje fans should have more interesting things to do than moaning and bitching about Van Gaal. He most likely will be our coach for at least two years from now. All the guys that dont like him that much, should get over this.

      We should concentrate on who will he call for the friendly match against Belgium, how he will prepare the team, how are our NT guys doing at their respective clubs, etc…

  13. Van Gaal trumps BVM in two significant way: He’s a creative manager. And he has made the most of Robben (twice!).

    Creative: Spain played a 4-6-0 (?!) against Italy? I just cant see BVM ever in a million years taking a creative risk like that. Van Gaal?

    Robben: Didn’t Foppe de Haan say that AR is the best Dutch player since… Cruijff? We’d be fools not to make the most of that.

    With time short, LVG might be the best guy to get the current configuration to gel in time to qualify.

  14. I dont care about his past with other teams. The only thing that I really care about it is, the average age of the team is too old and maybe future WC would be the final chance of some players like sneijder to win it, so van gaal is going to build a new team with new reinforcement that will help us to have a new era.
    He can just ignore some old players and bring some refreshment to the structure of the team. By combining these we can hope we will have a team that play more beautiful than past.

  15. … and talking about interesting things once more, it seems that RVP will not sign a new contract with the gunners. Which to me it seems a blessing already, while we would get rid of the biased Arsenal fans flooding the blog.

  16. Man oh man…
    This was the one appointment I feared. I kept hoping they would pull a rabbit out of the hat and snag a coach who could and would pull this together and have us at least competitive for the WK ’14. And by competitive I mean advancing into the Semi’s. But true to form, the K.N.V.B. does the exact opposite of Cruijff would have done. Why is it there is such animosity between the K.N.V.B. and Cruijff? Doesn’t it go all the way back to 1968 when Jopie got that red card?

    Anyways, we really could be facing the whole 1980 trek again. You know? Flame out in the Euro’s after a WK Runnerup finish and then we drift away on the fringes of qualifying until 1988. I hope I am wrong. I hope that van Gaal finds the right combonation and leads these spelers into good results. After all, my loyalties are with de Oranje, and not just a player of coach. If van Gaal succeeds, then we all do. So of course I will pull for him and the team.

    However… I am not hopeful. Wrong coach, wrong team, wrong moment.

    Back to cementing our reputation as the “Nearly Men”.

  17. Guys, all the coach´s candidates have “pros” and “contra”, but LvG has one, and maybe, the most important “pro”: the “hunger of victory”.

    Rijkaard was my best option to succeed BvM. I appreciate a lot the way orange plays under his leadership, and for me, is one of the best coach right now. But he has this “winner spirit?” this “hunger of victory”?

    When Orange lost semi final in WC 1998 Bergkamp said that they didn´t believe in themselves. For they achieve the semifinal was a good result. And I can´t tolerate that. It shows that Hiddink didn´t a good mental preparation. Even considering that team played very well, I don´t trust in Hiddink anymore.

    I don´t want a coach with this mentality “we don´t have the enough potential to win” or “we don´t have the players to win” or “for us achieve the semifinal is a good result” or worse “our goal is play beautiful football more than win the WC”.

    The Italians have never had a wonderful team but they won WC a few times, don´t they?. The won in 2006 with a regular team and lost it when they have Baresi, Baggio, Donadoni, Madini, etc.

    So, to win a WC you don´t necessary need the best team or the best players (example Italy in 2006 or France in 1998 or Germany in 74) but you need the right mentality and the “hunger of victory”.

    I know Van Gaal is a very risky decision. He is capable of the best, and the worst. But, we can´t deny that if we want someone who has the “hunger of victory” or “the wishes to won a WC” more than anybody else, that’s its Van Gaal.

    So, I am very nervous as you are, but also I am very excited. I know that if Van Gaal creates a cohesive team, we can win the WC. And most important, that’s Van Gaal goal!

    1. >When Orange lost semi final in WC 1998 Bergkamp said that they didn´t believe in themselves. For they achieve the semifinal was a good result. And I can´t tolerate that. It shows that Hiddink didn´t a good mental preparation. Even considering that team played very well, I don´t trust in Hiddink anymore.

      disagree 100%. The “failure” of 98 does not go against Bergkamp or Hiddink. It followed the mentality of the entire country. We lost two finals in the 70s (ok one lost, one “stolen”). I don’t think you fully understand the weight of this psychological burden and how long and what it takes to get rid of it.

      Brazil, a huge country with unlimited talent, had a 24 year dry spell and had to resort to pure defensive tactics to get back on the top.

      Bert, despite some of this flaws, proved that “yes we really can, again”. If the 98 team was playing now, after the accomplishments of 2010, it would win 2 World Cups hands down.

      Psychology is a *huge* factor. The “yes we can” inheritance from the BvM era could have been our best weapon for the next WK campaign.

      1. But why Hiddink didn´t tried to change this mentality?
        BvM did it in 2010, and that’s why I like him. Imagine 1998 team with the “yes we can” mentality.

        For me this “hunger of victory” or as you said “yes we can” mentality if what we need, because the lack of this mentality is our Achilles heel.

        And I think Van Gaal has it.

          1. problem is, he is a nutcase among other things.

            We almost won a WC and then imploded in the EC with a “pragmatist”. I’ll give this nutcase a try!

          1. The attitude and stuborness of sticking with same old guard and schemes and not having a plan B in my view is a “yes we can”. I think this has been discussed long enough. In Bert’s head we could still do it regardless of all the glaring issues. That’s the way I see it.

          2. >The attitude and stuborness of sticking with same old guard and schemes and not having a plan B in my view

            Apples. Just flaws of BvM.

            >is a “yes we can”.

            Oranges. There was no such mentality by anyone in the team during EK2012, players/coaches, even fans. Everything seemed “tired”

    2. Eduardo Yesterday Ajax has appointed Overmars as Manager Youth, Transfers and Scouting. Overmars Jonk and Bergkamp now together as in the nineties. Very good!

      I agree with your points. Its very exciting that after one of the most conservative coaches Holland ever had we now have a more experimenting and a little bit weird coach. We needed something like this after the year with bert.
      Most of all we can maybe change the defensive style which we were critcised for by all the media.
      I and many others have been annoyed by the behaviour of our stars for 4 years, and vgaal will end this.
      Demy de zeeuw who played for vgaal with AZ called him his all time favorite trainer, just wrote that Vgaal also trained some of these players with Jong Oranje at the WC in Argentina, and will end the disagreements between the players.

      Van Gaal is a bit strange but its remarkable that many players who worked with him said he was the best they had.

    3. LVG’s winning spirit is exactly what I’m afraid of. He might resort back to tactics we won’t like or explode in press conferences after he loses… Bert’s winning spirit made us go to a more counterattacking team.

      I think we want a coach with less winning spirit. A coach that says “Right! This is total football. This is how we play. And we will do this AND win games.”

      A guy that builds. A guy like Prandelli maybe? Or Guardiola.

      Who believes winning is ONLY important if you do it in the right way.

  18. If he can get Robben and sneijder on top form, we’ll be ok playing forward. I hope he doesn’t continue his constant experimentation with the defense, he did it as early as 2 years ago with bayern. He does like to play younger players, so you’d expect a couple of good young players to emerge… I just think he’s probably a better team coach than a nt manager, when bvm was a better nt manager.

    I actually think he will play hunter and bench rvp or probably not even call rvp for the team. Mario Gomez was benched @ bayern… Don’t expect anything less than completed ruthlessness in front of goal, which is what hunter is

  19. I was disappointed in 2002 as well but I remember very well those qualifying games.

    I remember our fist 2 rivlas were Ireland and Portugal and practically the whole team was injured after the EC 2000 so it was difficult to deal with that situation!!!.

    I also remember Frank’s and Davids’ bans so there we had our captain and 2nd captain suspendend.

    And I also remember the Lisbon game where the Dutch should’ve won but somehow managed to give away a 2-0 lead!.

    So OK LVG failed big time in 2002 but let’s give him a 2nd chance. He really deserves it.

  20. LVG is a much better choice than Gullit (yikes) and better than Hiddink (money chaser). Rijkaard I am not so sure, I never liked his laid back attitude, same with Van Basten. I would have preferred Foppe but it wasn’t to be and maybe for the better.
    LVG is lively, gets in your face and very passionate which I really appreciate. The success at Ajax was so spectacular with a bunch of young players. He was the one who first introduced Xavi ahead of Guardiola at Barca and Xavi adores him, Guardiola respects him very much, Mourinho speaks highly of him, LVG took a bunch of average german players on to the Champions League final with Bayern. He had his shortcomings but who doesn’t! Even during the 2002 debacle his record is not bad in a way. Of course he was foolish during second game in Portugal, but can’t blame him personally for Kluivert’s missed chances against Ireland (by the way Kluivert might have the lowest goals/chances ratio in soccer history).
    Forget BvM, EC2012 was a fuckin shame, it turns my stomach when I think of it. LVG will do much better and I hope he will get rid of the lazy and poisonous characters in the team.
    I am excited and very hopeful. I am not naive to think that Holland wins 2014 but I am sure we will qualify. Out with the boring (BvM), in with the exciting LvG. If he can contain the bad side of his personality he will be great.
    Good luck coach.

    1. “I am not naive to think that Holland wins 2014”

      see? there are you are. admit defeat 2 years early. of course you are not naive to think like that. With the current selection, it has no chance of happening. Isn’t this defeat in itself? the very definition of a “nutcase” selection? To admit that you know it will not happen ???

      1. Demi, this is a new coach with a 2 year contract. If he can get the team to the WC convincingly then I will start dreaming about winning it. Everything at a time. With a team in shambles after the worst tournament in history I would be stupid to think of WC glory.
        I am excited about the change and as I’ve said before LvG is capable of being a genius but also a fool. Let’s hope he shows more of the first.

        1. >Let’s hope he shows more of the first.

          he is the guy who after he failed to beat Ireland and qualify for the WK, he attacked the journalists like it is their fault. Come on, how retarded that is.

          Some guys do not have the skills required for being a national team coach. It is very different than being a club coach. Guys like Happel, BvM, Hiddink are made for NT. They will pick up parts made elsewhere and stitch them together to achieve max results. It is simply a skill that Gaal does not have. He will not adapt in his 60s. Trust me man, this is an experiment with WK2014 thrown in the garbage can already.

          BTW, the worst tournament was EK1980. It is not always results based.

          1. Yes, it is stupid to attack journalists and I am aware that he has a loose screw but so does Mourinho. Listen, you might be 100% right but this is what we have right now. I still think we’ll be better of with LvG than Bert. Perhaps 10 years later LvG has changed some of his ways. I hope I am not wrong. It all remains to be seen.

          2. Bert came, he created an unbeatable machine for 3 years and now his expiration date came up. Everything comes to an end including the Cruyff team in 77. But like Happel picked up the heavy duty of going to WK78, we also need an equivalent to lead the way to WK2014.

            I know what you are saying, why cry over spilled milk? I don’t know why … I am so deeply dissapointed at the idea of conceding the world cup for one more time… I want to get behind this strategy but I cannot arrive to stomach it…

  21. Van Gaal has taken Oranje.

    Cruyff has seized Ajax.

    In some ways, it’s a good fit: Cruyff can build a club, and a youth program; Van Gaal can be ruthless in his fight for redemption.

    And at the risk of blasphemy, it seems to this Yank that Cruyff sets a tone at the top of the voetbal pyramid that trickles down: he carps. A lot.

    Cruyff grouses interminably. So everyone else has free reign to bitch.

    I revere Cruyff as much as the next voetbal fan… but find that his example off the field is as wilting as his example on the field. For very different reasons.

    1. Cruijff is very particular about his “legacy”. You will never see him coach ever again. That way, if the results are subpar, he can keep himself and his legacy free from the dirt. But if there is success, he can claim (through others and articles praising him) that it was his vision all along. You see this specifically with the Spainish National Team and with F.C. Barcelona.

      He is not stupid. He is allowed to have it both ways.

      Now, this does not mean I am a Cruijff hater. Far from it! He, along with Michels, is the surviving leader of the Dutch “Totaal Voetbal” movement from the 1970’s. He is the Dutch Master in every sense of the word. And besides Rensenbrink, he remains my all-time favorite player.

      I often wonder what the future (now past) would have been had Cruijff taken the helm of the 1990 WK team, as the players wanted. Or if he and the K.N.V.B. had come to an accord with the ’94 Cup.

      1. >Cruijff is very particular about his “legacy”.

        totally true. His Total Football team seemed tired at ’77 and he probably felt he will not have another shot, that’s why he didn’t go to Argentina. He wanted to be remember at his top in 74.

        Not a hater either but let’s call a spade a spade.

  22. That’s good news I am waiting for! I really like him. The only person who really wants to lead a national team when nobody seems to really want it. The best candidates, Hiddink and Rijkaard, don’t seem to be interested in the job.

    I think Van Gaal is the only person who wants to take a risk. He can be very successful (AZ Alkmaar), or he can be failure completely (remember his second season with Bayern).

    Good luck. I hope Holland will qualify for the 2014 world cup.

  23. The appointment of Van Gaal is an excellent decision by the KNVB. There is no better candidate than him and I will explain why.

    When he was selected team manager of Oranje in 2000 that generation had super stars used to win at their clubs and at Oranje they had two semi finals under their belt (WK 98, EK 2000). That team was empty, not so much hunger and ambition and there were many issues about injured and suspended players in key games. Those things are not in control of any coach.

    Van Gaal´s appointment in 2012 comes after a disastrous Euro 2012 campaign in which the players felt their honor and reputation was damaged. Their prima donna attitude came to and end…humiliation was there for all of them! Now, not only Louis Van Gaal but key players of Oranje will want to redim themselves. That´s a different scenario than the last time Lucho Van Gaal took the reigns of Netherlands. At that time, the team had egos and attitudes issues like it happened in this Euro. Now, the players have experienced the worst after this poor and embarrasing campaing and everybody will be very very eager to change that image.

    So, Louis Van Gaal will inherit a team with a mentality of wanting to do things and certainly those ego issues will be there but Van Gaal will not want to fail at Oranje twice so expect him to axe the players who don´t want to collaborate with him. He will put discipline and will introduce new faces in to the squad.

    I know many of you don´t like him. But he has been one of the best Dutch coaches of history. He failed once at Oranje but that´s life. Van Marwijk did awesome in 2010 and failed badly in Euro 2012. There is no reason to think he will fail again. He can fail? Yes. He can triumph? Of course.

    LVG is not stupid. He knows that of his great CV and managerial career right now has been impressive but knows that he is remembered always for not qualifying Oranje for the WC 2002. I am pretty sure he has been waiting his time to take revenge and his decision to become the Dutch coach once again is to prove doubters wrong. He will take some risks for sure but expect a man who has learned from his mistakes and the previous experiencie at Oranje will provide him the tools and learnings to make the right choices from day one. He has prepared better this time to take revenge.

    I firmly don´t believe he is a club coach. Was Laurent Blanc or Beckenbaeur or Marco Van Basten a good club coach to guide their national teams? That´s bullshit. He is a total coach who understands better than any of us the Dutch school of football. He was succesful everywhere he has gone and his only failure was with Oranje and was not only his fault but the players too. He comes with more experiencie and after that bad spell he showed the World he can succeed again. I don´t know the outcome of this but there is something I can certainly tell: Oranje´s hunger and passion for the game will return with Louis Van Gaal.

    I just hope that replicates into results. I´d rather not qualify for a WC of European Championship instead of going to the tournament only to lose all games and be the worst team of the competition…But mark my words: I am sure Van Gaal will take us to Brazil 2014 and being there be careful of Oranjeeee.

    And for the ones who call JC all I can say is that Johan never had the balls to coach Oranje. He knew he had success as a coach and at Barcelona he was a legend so when he was active as a coach he didn´t want to risk his reputation by coaching Oranje because he knew that if he failed he could be remembered forever for that. Well, Van Gaal had the balls once and didn´t have it his way, now he is doing it once again…he has more balls than many of the people who only talk bad about him but do not remember the big picture: Success in 3 different countries and with a legacy of many young players who are stars and legends in football who were handed their debuts by Van Gaal….Kluivert, Xavi, Iniesta, Muller, Seedorf, Puyol…the list goes on.

    Van Gaal will clean his name this time.

    1. I agree.

      Van Gaal knows Holland better than anyone. I takes risk (which we have no other option now) and plays attacking football, which Holland plays best in.

      I would give him a second chance and he has motivation to prove himself.

      He likes the job too which is important here. Hiddink.. if we have to beg him to get this job then there’s no point.

      1. >Hiddink.. if we have to beg him to get this job then there’s no point.

        There is a point. Hiddink with Australia has a higher chance than winning the cup than Holland with Gaal. If KNVB guys are so proud to forgot their true mission, then I will do it. Just pass me Hiddinks number man !

    2. And for the ones who call JC all I can say is that Johan never had the balls to coach Oranje. He knew he had success as a coach and at Barcelona he was a legend so when he was active as a coach he didn´t want to risk his reputation by coaching Oranje because he knew that if he failed he could be remembered forever for that.

      Agree with Mario.

      JC has the legacy to protect, regardless of his disputes with the KNVB, I’m not sure if he’ll ever want to be the Oranje boss. It’s easier to criticize from afar but to actually taking over the responsibilities is another different thing.

      Like many other Oranje fans, I also worship JC the player but I think people should be realistic in assessing him. Not to mention expecting him to be the boss today, no way he’ll do it.

  24. Lets not be all doom and gloom, For every person saying we won’t win, lets remember something.

    Euro group stage, We could have won the first two games, I know we could have beat czech Republic, Greece, and Italy. at the world cup, we could have easily tied japan, lost to brazil, tied uruguay, and Beat Spain.

    Lets not get caught up in comparing era’s, Fact is International Football Is shit.
    Anybody who saw the past knows, Spain would get beat by 1998 Holland, Brazil, France, Croatia. 2000 Holland, Portugal, France,

    Today’s ERA is bad, We have synthetic balls which don’t favor skilled players. And all top players play in europe, in grueling seasons where they are tired.

    Just think about this one thing, IF holland plays to the best of the dutch ability, Who can really beat us?

    Spain, Portugal (have our number) Maybe argentina if they play great. Germany maybe? Brazil (cheating refs homefield advantage)

    That means we have a chance to win any tournament we go to, Remember the World cup is weaker than the Euro.

    just look at the players we have in our arsenal. The Euros should have never happened the way it did, But it did, So did we learn our lessons?

    Van Gaal isn’t what we want, But maybe he is what we need. a dictator willing to get rid of players if they don’t benefit.And take chances bring in players so we know what we are working with. I have a sneaking suspicion that if the rumors are true about dutch players complaining like van der vaart and huntelaar, That they won’t even receive a call up.

    And current International football favors team actions, who’s the stronger team. And Louis Van Gaal is all about organization. Lets just hope his big ego doesn’t get in the way of one of the greatest footballing minds on the planet today.

  25. The open question with van Gaal is temperament. He has the other skills–smart, organized, played 4-3-3 when with Ajax, active along the touchlines, ambitious and wants to succeed. If he can control his emotions, this is an excellent choice. Only time will tell. I support the choice, because Louis is capable of excellence. I would look for new faces on the national team, and some bruised egos of some of the current “superstars”–both of which will be positive consequences resulting from this choice. Now the new journey begins.

  26. Speculating Van Gaal decisions:

    He will build a 4-3-3 or 4-2-3-1, team, with skilled and faster players (that´s why I see Clasie and Strootman with a lot of chances of become very important players)

    Van Gaal will say:

    1. GOODBYE to Mathinsen, Boularuz, Bouma, Van Bommel, Kuyt, Van der Vaart.

    2. IN DOUBT will remain Huntelaar, Van Persie.

    3. CONTINUE FOR SURE our most important players: Sneijder (new skipper), Robben, De Jong. I hope Huntelaar and Van Persie too.

    4. GIVEN A CHANCE TO CURRENT PLAYERS: Heitinga, Van der Wiel, Luuk de Jong, Vlaar, Strootman, Narsingh, Eljero Elia.

    5. WELCOME TO NEW BLOOD: Jordy Clasie, Maher, Anita. Other potential new players will be: Viergiver, De Vrij, Douglas, Bruma, Van Wolkswinkel, Wijnaldum, Ola John

    The faces of the new Van Gaal orange will be: Sneijder, Robben, Strootman, Clasie, and one central back and number 9, but I can´t guess who will be.

  27. Maybe we will see Strootman playing as libero.

    Imagine this defense:

    Anita–Douglas–Strootman–Vd W

    and the middle:


    Ups, I forgot Affelay on the previous list on number 3.

  28. Absolutely disappointing appointment. Bringing back a loser who made us wait 8 years for another WC is just unacceptable.

    We have a great generation of players at their peak right now. Almost all of them are 28, 29 years old. This is when experience in a player comes through. This is when players are most hungry to win.

    Unfortunately, personal egos got the better of the team in this past Euro. BVM was too complacent and too late to salvage the team. I believe we needed someone who could build bridges, bring team cohesion and morale back into the squad.

    I have a feeling that he’ll bust up this team and start fresh with a lot of new players. Instead of trying to get the best out of the current squad and making tactical and personnel adjustments, he would try to make wholesale changes. Younger players who he can do whatever he wants instructs them to do. That means, we are going into complete rebuilding mode instead of retooling and win now mentality. If that’s the case, then 2014 will be just a developmental tournament.

    What we got now is an egomaniac who doesn’t seem like he’s learned anything at the ripe old age of 60. He wants to be worshiped as the greatest footballing genius. He thinks that he knows everything and will do whatever it takes to get his way.

    Another huge weakness of this team is the defense. Van Gaal is obsessed with offense. He’s someone who believes that he will outscore anyone no matter how many goals his team concedes. He will not sacrifice his tactics or his religious dedication to offense even if it means losing a game or a tournament.

    1. when you know that your guy will NOT bring back the WK no matter what, then you know you made a shitty decision. Gaal will not bring the cup to Holland, let alone we don’t know if his lunacy will prevent us from qualifying.

  29. @Onzie,
    if Holland plays to its abilities we can win. Yes that’s true but you forget what kind of defenders we have or had recently. Unless we are able to fix that, we’ll always be leaking easy goals.

    You guys are just so focused on offense only. As good as Spain was playing offensively, they had capable defenders and a world class goalkeeper that gave the other teammates the confidence and peace of mind to play their game. It’s demoralizing whenever we our offense scores a goal and we give up stupid goals in the back. You can dominate 80% ball possession and all other stats and still lose unless you have a defense that gives you a chance to capitalize on your advantage. That is reality!

    1. not true, I look at the defenders we have, and they are good enough,

      I am not impressed by douglas, or bruma

      But we got Hedwiges Maduro , Jeffrey Gouweleeuw, Stefan De Vrij, Nick Viergever, Danny Blind, RIcardo Van Rhijn, Vurnon Anita, We could even put Nigel de jong there, Bram Nuytinck, Plenty of options

      left back and Right back are no problems.

      Center back gets kind of iffy, With young untested guys, but hey if we don’t try them we don’t know.

      It’s funny but i actually think our younger defenders will be better than a lot of our future attackers.

      1. thats an assumption you make that i’m only looking at offense, Before the euros

        Bert Van Marwijk Made a Bunch of infuriating, weird decisions, I mean come on, Jetro Willems left back, Stijn Schaars left back, Wilfred Bouma central defender, Keeping with mathijsen and Heitinga, with only vlaar there.

        should have been vurnon anita.

        and mathijsen just didn’t have it anymore

        and heitinga should have been great, everton player of the season, but he played bad for reasons unknown,

        and van der wiel was bad, but hey van rhijn was better than him,

        We got plenty of defenders, Let not fall into this trap, that because these yongsters don’t play for arsenal, or barcelona, or ac milan like our attackers, they automatically aren’t of standard. There is no way to know if they are good or bad unless you play them.

        Create a problem that you solve, There was no real problem to begin with. in 2010 sure, but 2012, nope, guys came of age and played better.

        1. All of those defenders you mentioned… Jeffrey Gouweleeuw, Stefan De Vrij, Nick Viergever, Danny Blind, RIcardo Van Rhijn, Vurnon Anita etc are all promising talents. A lot of them are still young and inexperienced. With all due respect, they need more time and bigger challenges before we can expect them to stop the likes of Neymar, Ronaldo, Messi, Xavi, Balotelli etc in 2014.

  30. Lesley de Sa, Mitchell Dijks and Sven Nieuwport and have all been training with the first Ajax´s team.

    Any comments about them?


  31. @OhYeah,
    maybe you wanted Van Gaal as coach. I don’t think you speak for me when you say that’s what we all wanted. I’m sorry if I misunderstood what you said. I wanted Oranje to play better but I believe Van Gaal is the last person I wanted to see.

    I don’t think putting in a striker when you are 2 goals up with 10 mins to go makes you a great tactician. It makes you a great gambler. A lot of people in Vegas end up losing everything cause they don’t know when to get out while they are up. With the crisis in defenders we have right now, it seems like a crazy move to appoint someone like him.

    That’s what I’m most disappointed about. Why take the risk? We have great players. We need a few tweaks to fix our defense and motivate the rest of the players to perform.

    As Jan said, he should have taken over U-21 Oranje or some other national team like Ireland, Japan or whoever wants a Dutch coach in order to prove himself.

  32. The core players are either on their prime or on the decline side (late 20’s) so KNVB gave Van Gaal 2 years deal. The worst thing can happen? We will not qualify for 2012 WC, then we simply bring in Frank De Boer/Gio/Cocu/Bergkamp… and they will rebuild (definitely not with this current core players) as they need more time (at least 2 years away). I hope for a better scenario. If Van Gaal can bring the best of the current core players plus blending in more younger players then at least we may have a decent chance in 2014; at the same time line up a better chance to win Euro 2016.
    It sounds like Hiddink and Rijkaard do not want this job (either that or KNVB did not pursue enough). Either way decision has been made. We just hope for the best. Yes, the downsize is we may miss the WC but the pressure to change the way we play is simply too much. They left Bert alone because he had success. The moment he failed he became the main scapegoat/sacrifice, mostly because of the style he chose for this team to play.
    Let’s hope for the best. We will wait to see which Van Gaal will show up. The older wiser (learning from past mistakes) or still the big ego, crazy one.

    1. “… the downsize is we may miss the WC but the pressure to change the way we play is simply too much…”

      Really? It’s much more important to change the way we play and miss the WC than to make a few adjustments and qualify?

      And who says that Van Gaal is the only coach in Holland who can achieve that?

      I’m sure Rijkaard or Hiddink or whoever came in would have made changes to BVM’s system. The main thing was to drop one of the 2 defensive midfielders. That would have instantly changed the system.

    2. >Yes, the downsize is we may miss the WC

      come on Hien, how can we support this choice then? I am full of tears since yesterday. Another lost WK ???

      1. Please stop crying.

        If your tears are about Holland losing yet another World Cup, it’s just a waste of salt: NO European team has ever won the Cup in South America.

        So we have a snowball’s chance to begin with. 🙂

        1. >NO European team has ever won the Cup in South America.

          not true. Holland never lost in 78, it was STOLEN ! the biggest robbery of all times.

      1. @demi, i hope you read my post in previous van bommel talks, I didn’t call you an idiot, i don’t call anyone names

        and yes, Rijkaard was 5.3 million a year

        , van gaal at bayern had 8.5 million a year

        1. you can call me an idiot, will not hold it against you 🙂

          the problem is when the coach of the Oranje is an idiot 🙁

          you cannot start a new campaign for the WK when you know there is no chance you will win the cup. so call me an idiot 1000 times but bring Guus or Rijkaard…

          1. I don’t call anyone an idiot, i don’t know you

            Van gaal is not an idiot, He’s probably the smartest Coach we have, but….

            and a big but…… his ego is gigantic

            For every player that loves him, someone hates him equally as bad

            Xavi Loves him, Van Bommel hates him, Frank De Boer Likes him, Danny Blind Loves him, Kluivert hates the guy, Romario hates him, riquelme hates him, Luca toni hates him, and saw his balls!, Lucio hates him, Guardiola and Mourinho Love him, Iniesta loves him.

            So it is gonna be interesting,

            He could literally get a bunch of young minds to love him, and get a bunch of old guns to hate him…

            I just know van der vaart, Van persie, huntelaar, nigel de jong, are gonna have problems, with maybe robben.

            and others will flourish, mainly ajax players getting chances.

          2. >Van gaal is not an idiot, He’s probably the smartest Coach we have,

            who ever attacks journalists because of his own mistakes, is the very definition of an idiot. That was when he was 50 years old. What really makes you think he has improved?

            Why jeopardize the entire campaign for the WK? just to “try things”? come on there must be a better more thoughtfull way…

          3. thats an effect of the ego, has nothing to do with his brains, Maybe social intelligence is low in terms of media.

            But football wise, he’s a genius.


            utterly senseless or foolish behavior; a stupid or foolish act, statement, etc.

            foolish behavior is

            1. Lacking or exhibiting a lack of good sense or judgment; silly: foolish remarks.
            2. Resulting from stupidity or misinformation; unwise: a foolish decision.

            could just be he’s angry to attack journalist, He feels they don’t know anything and are stupid, That to me is more the definition of an elitist. A Superiority or inferiority complex, Where He feels he’s Superior to the media.

            All dutch coaches have at times, lacked good sense and judgement, Hindsight is 20/20

            I don’t think we’ve ruined our chances, There would be no way to truly know, he messed up once, And I didn’t want him as the head coach, I’ve been a staunch Gertjan Verbeek guy. But he’s the coach now. And i find it hard to believe he costs us another world cup.

            as long as he doesn’t do anything stupid, we should be fine, He was stupid for holland in 2002, but recently with bayern he went to champions league final.

            We can look at why he failed at bayern munich, slow start after the world cup, He wanted his own players.

            and he was just like bert van marwijk, sticking to the same formation, no matter what, even when it became predictable, Kept van bommel, when his passing statistics were bad and predictable,

            and playing guys out of position.

            I actually have a feeling, his first two years will be great, but after that, it will be a disaster,

  33. Where is your guys faith in youth, Germany Played with a young team, and got to the semi-finals of the world cup.

    We got plenty of youngsters better than theirs.

    although maybe not as good as reus and Ozil,

    But i see lars bender, andre Schlure, Toni Kroos, Mueller, Gotze, Boateng, Hummels, and badstuber 23 or under, and i’m not impressed.

    Overrated most of these guys,

    and then Look at Holland, look at ajax

    Ajax got screwed out of the knockout rounds, On top of that Beat manchester united in the europa league. (won 1 game, lost another, didn’t have aggregate)

    Lets not remain blind to what we have, is it coincidence that Holland, Germany, and Spain win all the youth competitions?

    We are at least 3rd best. Which is enough to win anything.

  34. I would like to see an IN DEPTH review of Van Gaal’s previous tenure as National Coach – which system he played the most, which players got benched and why, what kind of substitutions he brought on, which results were made, etc.
    He is likely to remember the tactics that worked for him last time and re-use them.
    I think it would be nice to start imagining our new look team – replacing like for like players in LVG’s old system.

    Does LVG favour a 433?

    Does LVG favour certain players/strategies?

    After a pretty miserable two years as Oranje fan, I can start to feel optimistic again.

    Goodbye grey sky, hello blue.
    There’s nothing can hold me when I hold you.
    Feels so right, it can’t be wrong.
    Rockin’ and rollin’ all week long.
    These days are ours,
    Share them with me. (Those Happy Days)
    These days are ours,
    Happy and Free. (oh baby)
    These Happy Days are yours and mine.
    These Happy Days are yours and mine, Happy Days.

    1. What does it matter what kinda tactics he used back in 2002? That should have been done before they lost their mind and appointed him. Whatever he did, it obviously failed big time!

      1. I didn’t say it mattered! I said I’d like to see it, and I think it would be interesting – you know, something to do with our time other than post endless line-ups, disagree with moot points, argue for the sake of it, and generally show the entire world exactly how insufferably limited our football knowledge really is, SamDC…..

  35. The Vertonghen sells is almost done.

    This is very good news, because Ajax´s will receive cash, and they will sing a new center back, luckily a Ducth one who need to improve.

    It will be nice if Ajax´s sing Nyutink or Viergiver. They need to chance they team in order to improve. It will be nice for Orange.

    I read that the Ajax´s options are: Moisander (i hope not), Nyuting and Viergiver.

  36. I think where BvM was calmer in the way he handled the players, he was not able to change a faltering team for the better. He might have had a good plan to start with but in the end seemed quite clueless by his own doing.

    LvG on the other hand will never rest even when things are going well. He surely can make a team play much better than the qualities of individual players may suggest. The things to hope for is Oranje to at least qualify for 2014 and then peaking at the right moment(s).

    We’ll know more in 2 years from now. lol

  37. @Goldstone

    “…If your tears are about Holland losing yet another World Cup, it’s just a waste of salt: NO European team has ever won the Cup in South America…”

    They said the same thing about no European team winning outside of Europe until Spain and Holland both made it to the final in the last WC.

    Brazil is fairly weak at the moment. This current team is nowhere near as talented as the one that won in 2002 or 1994.

    Argentina is unpredictable. Unless Messi becomes the Messi of Barca, I don’t see them winning in Brazil of all places.

    If you ask me, Spain is still the favorites for 2014.

    Of course, it’s still two years away and a lot can change.

    My biggest disappointment with Van Gaal is his unpredictable nature. He may get you to the WC final in Brazil and with one idiotic move, he could undo all he has done to get there. His tendency to implode is ever present.

    1. at the moment Euro soccer is so far ahead of the south american one, the final 4 two years from now might as well be the same as they were in EK2012… Brazil can make it, they will have a lot of support. They are in decline but I wouldn’t count them out. Argentina? LOL no way with that defense … It will be another Euro dominated WK. Are we going????

      1. uruguay are stronger than brasil or argentina. their defense is solid,the midfield is a good mx and they have two worldclass strikers: suarez and cavani. forlan might be there,but they’ll be strong without him.

    2. The difference between South America and Africa, of course, is the home field advantage.

      No African team could measure up.

      You’re kidding yourself if you think Brazil won’t samba the hell out of folks.

  38. Van Gaal is not my choice. I’m not saying Van Gaal is the only coach that can change the style we play. I feel the press and many fans did not like the way this team play since Bert took over. There was no reason to fire Bert because he was successful but many criticized the way the team play continously. They just waited for a chance to ask Bert resigned and Euro2012 gave them this chance. I am not suggesting changing the style and missing WC is a good thing, but to rebuild now without a good coach is even more difficult. I think with this at least they buy some more time waiting for Frank De Boer, Gio, Cocu…the next generation coach.
    By selecting Van Gaal, KNVB made their biggest gamble, even bigger than hiring Bert which was not well known at that time. I just hope we will see the best of him, not the worst of him.

  39. One more note, Rijkaard and Hiddink have not come out to say that they are interested if circumstance allowing this to happen. Not even once.

  40. Louis is the greatest coach we currently have. I am also not convinced about his fit with national team coaching, but considering the options available I still think KNVB made the right choice. Come on Louis show them how it is done !!!

  41. I understand people are worried to the mistakes he made in 2002 but time has learned vgaal new things.

    With ajax he played 343 and 433
    With AZ he saw he could not play 433 with his players and changed to 442.
    With Bayern he played 4213 which vmarwijk/Low/Jonker later copied.
    Thats th e beauty of vgaal he knows each sysytem and can adopt a sytem and keeps adjusting it where vmarwijk had only one system. His teams always have a sense that everything is in place and naturally positioned.
    This does not mean I agree with all his decisions, I never knew what he saw in Reiziger at the time and why he never tried another defender. Or buying zenden for barca… and never liked how he bought dutchman after dutchman at Barca, one of the things which cost him in the end. He was not clever enough to foresee that and it cost him a lot of votes together with his media policy.
    But in truth I dont care vgaal is bad with the press as long as he is good with the team.

    Vgaal is keen to follow new technology he was the one who had installed a vdo system on training field of Bayern, recording every move of every player. This was analysed and for each player an indivdiual plan was made to get him in better shape, work on his flaws, prevent injuries.
    I am sure with KNVB he will try to improve things there, cut the dead wood, and will watch each player sharply to see if he can be improved.
    Vgaal did change things at knvb before: he reorganised the knvb youth department when he worked there, which, conidering all the succes of jong oranje and other youth teams since then, turned out very well.

  42. Everybody keeps saying how “LVG is not stupid”….

    Well, he is!! People wake up. He is like this mad scientist. People learn from him. But Mourinho is much smarter than LVG with the media. Or Pep. Or Frank de Boer.

    There is a bright side to LVG: very knowledgeable about football.

    His dark side: he is a sociopath (look up the definition on the net).

    He tried to stab JC in the back at Ajax only 6 months ago with Blind. That was a stupid move. He thought the Board of Directors could secretly appoint him as the Big Boss at Ajax and get away with it.

    People, with Louis it is ALL ABOUT LOUIS!!

    His first words when he got this job: “I am so pleased with this challenge”.

    I’d say: “Who gives a shit. It’s not about you. It’s about Oranje being in shambles mate. What are you going to do about it.”

    He was at Bayern, then his name was mentioned at Liverpool, then he wanted the Ajax job and now this. He is a career focused ego-tripper.

    In his AZ contract, he had a list of 6 top nations that were allowed to contract him and therefore provided an exit out of the AZ job!!!

    If anyone would ever ask me for a clause like this in his contract, I would get up and leave.

    This man is a selfcentered megalomaniac.

    Yesterday, they showed a little bit of the press conference on telly when he resigned from 2002. This bit where he is photographed all the time and he touches his nose. He exploded: “Oh, I’m touching my nose. Oh, now people are suddenly taking photographs. Because the media can publish funny pictures of my touching my nose!! Stop taking pictures when I touch my nose!!!!”

    This guy is Nero and Tony Montana in once package 🙂

    1. This man is a selfcentered megalomaniac.


      I’m not disputing what you said about van Gaal. Recalling the article from der Spiegel that related the Dutch culture and historical background about football, maybe – just maybe – a 2nd coming of a “self-centered megalomaniac” is what the Oranje needs. Some of my Dutch friends always say that the Oranje has some sort of inferiority complex then they’d act opposite as primadonnas.

      Well, again I am very familiar with his failure in 2002 but maybe his ego will be bigger than the players and can get them playing as one team. Not sure if that Luca Toni article is correct but if he really showed his b@lls to his players, I’d want him to show his b@lls when Afellay says “I play for Barcelona, who are you playing for?” to shut him up.

      It is already decided, for better or worse, I am behind LvG 100% and look forward to our qualifying and maybe make noise in Brazil. To whoever says we will not qualify against Turkey or Romania, come on …. seriously? We ARE THE ORANJE! We will qualify for 2014.

      1. >To whoever says we will not qualify against Turkey or Romania, come on …. seriously?

        sure. let me answer. The possibility we will not qualify is not high but it is there and here is why. Gaal will try to make too many changes in short time and the players will not adapt. boom, too many points could be lost this September. The possibility is still there. And then we will have to go beg Hiddink with even more money to take over the mess. It is not unthinkable as you say. Gaal is a nutcase and WK qualifiers are just a few games a year. No time to make many adjustments and a few lost games and you are OUT.

        1. As a “glass half-full” guy, here is how I’ll look at things. We came to EC 2012 with high confidence after WC 2010 final and great qualifications. We stinked in last 70 mins or so of all 3 matches. I still think we could/would have fared differently had we scored 2-3 goals in the first 20 mins against Denmark but could’ve/would’ve.

          Italy arrived with hardly any expectations, they over-delivered. Germany arrived with even higher expectations, they under-delivered. Spain arrived with the highest expectations, they delivered (end result + 1 final match, not earlier matches).

          Not trying to be cryptic but what I am trying to illustrate is tournament football is nothing like science or math. One or two events can change the outcome for many teams.

          I agree there are possibilities that we will not qualify to WC 2014 but if I’m a betting man, I’d say the probability is much lower than qualifying. Despite the uncertainty elements, I consider us to be the top tier of football powerhouses, not Turkey or Romania. Yes, we can still be negatively surprised but chances are just because we failed in EC 2012 I don’t see any need for us to be panicked and forget we are (were) one of the best. Just the same reasons why we probably shouldn’t have been too optimistic coming into EC 2012.

          I’m expecting van Gaal to boot out Joris, Johnny, Kuyt and maybe vdV and vdW (I just don’t see LvG tolerating his sh*t). I don’t see any problem for him to get replacements, all of you here on this blog have mentioned lots of names. Maybe give the armband to Wesley. Have a talk with RvP/KJH, re-motivate Robben. So maybe the changes will not be as drastical or dramatic as you’d think? I meant MvB, Joris, Heitinga, Kuyt needed to go anyway with or without the new coach.

          1. I sure hope so Gaal will use some common sense. But he has a record of not doing so. I cannot overlook the disaster possibility, although I agree with you it is low.

    2. Jan

      I tend to agree with some of what you say – but think that Stefan Coerts has summed it up best: At the moment, for a bunch of reasons, van Gaal is the best choice.

      And who knows – what if he does it? – what if he finds the right combination of youth, playing style, experience and tactics (with some luck – for once!! – of course) and wins it?

      It will be so much fun looking back at all of these comments :-0 An entire blog post in itself!!!

      Anyways – he’s here – and we need to support him.


    3. Jan, in your description of van Gaal, you are also describing, at least in part, all of the coaches who have led the Netherlands national team. In order to effectively lead a group of ego-driven athletes, a coach has to have a big ego as well. I also believe, from what I have read on your blog over the years, and from David Winners great book,that the Dutch athlete is different, requires to be heard, requires a positive response to his opinion, requires the ability to debate with everyone about everything! Is this not a good description of Mr. Cruijff? It seems to me that in order to organize, to teach, to motivate and to intimidate, a van Gaal ego is required. Most successful coaches are not “nice guys”, as for example to record of Rinus Michels. He was called a military dictator type, yet he was successful and is now a venerated Dutch figure. If van Gaal wins, the Dutch and probably many of us will not care if he is a sociopath, as you describe him (be careful, my friend). My limited, distant view of Mr. van Gaal is that he a gifted coach who is also incredibly immature, acting like a spoiled child when things do not go his way. In contrast, my limited distant view of Mr. van Marwyck is that he is a very nice guy, reasonably mature and mediocre as a national team football coach. In America, we had a coach many years ago, also now venerated, named Vincent Lombardi, who coached American football teams to success. Mr. Lombardi was excellent in motivating athletes to become the best they were capable of becoming, and coaching them in the skills it took to get there. He was also, however, driven, cocky, emotional, temperamental and on occasion a real nut case. The prima donna athletes of today, most especially in international football, need to be coached by someone who is not afraid of them, who will demand excellence, and who will say goodbye to those athletes who do not produce to the best of their abilities. If the KNVB gives van Gaal full control of the national team for the next couple of years, “we” will get much better than we have been.

      One final opinion, not expressed by many of your bloggers–but by some–which I think is very important on a go-forward basis. Euro ’12 was not the aberration in the history of the Dutch team. The team played to its capacity and talent pool. WC ’10 was the aberration, where the team exceeded all expectation, played beyond their natural skills and team interactions and damn near won the whole thing, much like the ’78 team did.The point I am trying to make is that this Euro was not about a good team gone bad, but about the embarrassing reality of what the team has now become–terrible defense, muscle-headed style, inability to withstand pressure and—drum roll, please–A SIGNIFICANT LACK OF TALENT! So, these are the challenges which van Gaal faces, and I think he knows it. I, for one, wish him good luck.

    4. actually that is funny, I really wanted to call him a psychopath but i felt that would be too harsh.

      but he does exhibit signs of that. But the thing about psychopaths are this, They stop at nothing to get their goals, They have no morals, And he is all about him, and to be all about him, he has to win..

      That means a horrible personality that is willing to sacrifice anyone to win, Meaning if we lose he will throw guys under the bus and blame them. But at least we know one thing, he will do whatever it takes to win.

  43. @Jan Yes those things you say are true he has sociopathic and megalomaniac features. But there is always another side to things , to give a full picture: vGaal is also one of the friendliest people if he wants to be. When I watched AZ tv when he was there he was always taking time for even the smallest newspaper journo and helped organising funds for disabled kids, giving free training to kids also in his ajax time.

    I also like to mention he is together with his wife ambassador of Spieren voor spieren, org for children with a chronic muscle disease.

    Maybe this comes form the time Luois was teacher in amsterdam for children with learning disabilities. He also did a lot of volunteering, I have heard from people who went to that school and who loved him. People who say vgaal is jut a madman dont know about this. This may not mean much about him a coach … but despite his big mouth he has a very good heart.

  44. Spain is the favourite in WC 2014. If Germany and Italy can improve they will be there in semi final. Uruguay is the best S.A team right now. Brazil only has home advantage. You may see they play like in 94. So at this point I think it is a very good chance an European team will win WC2014. I just hope we can qualify for WC 2014. I do not see Van Gaal continues after 2014 although he may not last that long.
    Let’s hope for the best. What can I say, I do not have a vote in this decision.

  45. After Bert resigned. Only Van Gaal and Gullit said they wanted the job. Rijkaard and Hiddink are under contract. If KNVB wanted Frank and Guus they needed to pay to get them out of the contract. Louis is the cheaper option. Money is a factor. Louis has the better coaching record than Ruud although as Jan said, he is a nutcase. Jan is right. This is not about him, this should be about Oranje. What did Louis said? He wanted a chance to redeem, so it is about himself again. Look at that smile! We can only hope that Louis calms down and put Oranje first, not his glory again.

  46. Rinus Michels, Johan Cruyff, Bert, Frank and Guus are my top 5 Dutch coaches. Van Gaal is #6 (on my list). I just hope Louis proves that he belongs to the top 6.

  47. @Jan Something went wron when I uploaded my post.
    Jan Yes those things you say are true he has sociopathic and megalomaniac features. But < vGaal is also one of the friendliest people if he wants to be. When I watched AZ tv when he was there he was always taking time for even the smallest newspaper journo and helped organising funds for disabled kids, giving free training to kids.

    I also like to mention he is together with his wife ambassador of Spieren voor spieren, org for children with a chronic muscle disease.

    Maybe this comes form the time Luois was teacher in amsterdam for children with learning disabilities. This may not mean much about him a coach … but despite his big mouth he has a very good heart.

  48. oh come on now Jan, lets not exagerate. Wasnt the players of AZ some years ago wanting him to stay for another season, and won the Eredivisie after? Isnt Germany now playing the way he taught them to play? Isnt Barça the team it is now partly because of him?

    All this animosity against our headcoach will turn bad. Those who dont like him, should bite the bullet and get behind the team. If not for anything, because they are missing all the fun with him now at the helm.

    Going from a mute silverfish like Bert to this “egomaniac” of LVG should provide a lot of exitement.

  49. we blame BvM because he doesn’t changes and now we blame VG because he want to do a lot of changes.

    let’s wait. the main team will be the same

  50. Schedule for Oranje:

    August: A friendly with Belgium.

    September: Meet Turkey in the first WC2014 qualifying match.

    Let’s see what kind of results will LvG get.

    1. August 15, 2012. King Baudouin Stadium, Belgium.

      This according to Wikipedia. It would be interesting to know if Jan or anyone else knows of good streaming sites that will broadcast the match. Its definitely in my calendar already.

      Besides the qualifiers there is one other friendly scheduled for this calendar year: It will be played November 14th against the Germans! Now, that game I’d really want to see live.

  51. Jan,

    What you say can fit more easily Cruyff rather than Louis. For us Ajax fans we shall never forget what LVG did with Ajax in the nineties. That team is widely respected and won a place in football history. So for most Ajax fans (especially post seventies generation like myself) it is difficult to take sides in the Cruyff vs Louis debacle. For me they are equally great … of course from a leadership / coaching perspective. Cruyff is then unique as a player.

    1. Well no. See Cruyffism is an evolution not a revolution. He sets out to form from the grassroot levels a system, an idea, a tiki-taka style of play, the beneficiary of which is FC Barca. Louis is a one season man. He revolutionises the squad up to a point where it implodes.

        1. Internationally? rarely. Not since the 90’s with Ajax and that was a special group of players which unfortunately ajax could not keep longer.

  52. I will support him going forward, but when he as appointed my very first thought was:

    “why does it seems that everyone in power hates cruyff?”

    I thought this was the perfect time to bring him back. With popular opinion against the Oranje, it would have been the type of gutsy gamble that I think would have paid off.

    Have egos in the group? How about one Holland’s heroes.
    Need creativity and total football? Look no further.
    Need to sell tickets? It would be spectacular.

    However, especially after the fiasco at Ajax, nobody wants to touch him. I hope this team goes far, it would be a shame that this generation of sneijder, van persie and robben doesn’t win anything.

  53. ~~~~~~~~~~~~Krul~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Bruma ~~~ Douglas ~~~ Viergever
    ~~~~~~~~~~~ Fer ~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Clasie ~~ Sneijder ~~ Strootman
    Narsingh ~ Huntelaar ~ Robben


    1. van gaal ajax concept was 3-3-1-3, with Jari Litmanen As the playmaker (the 1 in the formation) , and the wingers overmars and george findi had to stay as wide as possible,

      The 3 midfielders, had one guy who could go aid in attack (rijkaard) and drop back into defense, Bruma is central defender, he can’t be there,

      I am liking the concept, but the players aren’t quite in the perfect positions, Clasie is perfect either side, Strootman i’m not so sure of.

      i’m liking the concept, but in international football, who knows, Dominate the midfield and you win the game, usually.

      I would still like some experienced guys on the team.

  54. I prefer 4-4-3 (strootman as libero):

    VdW ~~~ Douglas ~~~ Viergever/Anita
    ~~~~~~~~~~~ Strootman ~~~~~~~~~
    Affelay ~~ Clasie ~~ Sneijder
    Narsingh ~ Huntelaar ~ Robben

  55. But if Van Gaal don´t want to change the system, can be:

    ~~~~~~~~~Clasie~~ Strootman ~~~~~~~~~
    Narsingh ~ Sneijder ~ Robben
    ~~~~~~~~~~ Huntelaar ~~~~~~~~~

  56. since everyone is doing a formation, let me join the party

    ————- ——– Stekelenburg————————

    ——–Gouweleeuw —————-Viergever————–


    ————-Clasie————-N. De Jong——————



    Reason for this, is that sneijder favors going to the left side, Huntelaar is great off the ball, and can pull defenders to allow robben to shoot, Elia will stay wide, and can track back, so elia would be able to get great crosses for huntelaar. Clasie and De jong can pick up guys in defense, and clasie can come forward and shoot a shot and distribute passes very well.

    The key here is that pieters, and Anita have to push up, Although i would like van rhijn, there is no guarantee. But hey this is just my guess, we don’t know anything

    Van gaal is in charge and we’ll find out on august 15 what we have

    1. I dont mind that, lots of pressure on NDJ to cover a young back 4! I may like to see one or both of Heitinga and Douglas in the CB positions.

      1. yeah like i would rather have maduro there with viergever if maduro proves himself at sevilla,

        Honestly not a fan of douglas,

        But I put gouweleeuw just because he’s supposed to be the dutch pique, but honestly i haven’t seen much of him or herenveen, only when they played ajax and psv, so 4-6 games is a small sample size for me to judge a player.

          1. yes but the thing with injuries is sometimes some guys take forever to regain their previous form, or never recover. So he has to play a lot for sevilla and good, plus being in spain is good for him.

  57. steklenburg

    strootman (libero) Douglas
    van rijhn pieters

    de jong sneijder
    afellay elia



    Schaars (libero) Donk ??
    VDW ?? Willems

    Fer Clasie
    wijnaldum john


    1. very good move, he will get plenty of playing time to replace marko marin, he’s the starter for sure, and if he can’t start at werder bremen, well then he doesn’t deserve to be on holland’s starting squad

  58. As long as we’re churning about lineups…

    I’d like to see a 2-3-2-3 — so that we could start two offensive midfielders (Sneijder and Vaart), a la Barca.

  59. unless we fix defense, it don’t matter what kinda lineup is out there.

    Elia move from Juventus confirmed by Bremen.

    I wish he moved to the PL. Even though, I’m not a Liverpool fan, they should have taken him on loan. That would have been a better challenge and a step up. Playing for Hamburg and now Bremen is gonna be tough.

    I hope he proves himself at Bremen. We really missed his play in Oranje. He was an instant catalyst whenever he came on for Oranje. His passing and attempts on goal still need a lot of work but there’s no denying that he has talents and the good thing is that he’s still relatively young.

  60. its seem that ajax is behin nyutink to sub vertonghen.

    why ajax prefer nyutink over goueeleeuw or viergiver?

    its because he is cheaper? because is left foot? or because he has more potential in jaap stam and frank de boer eyes than the others?

  61. My feeling about LvG is that either he takes Oranje all the way in style or he fucks it up so bad that noone would ever dare to hire him as manager. i can only picture the extremes with him – nothing in the middle. one thing is for sure, the media is going to have a blast with him! whatever happens, i support Oranje all the way!

    hup holland hup

  62. I think we can ALL sound out our frustrations here and call van Gaal whatever we want. But in the end, we will still support him and Oranje and would LOVE to be proven wrong !!

  63. i really support him…and its funny and also irritating how many of u r reacting to his taking the helm….we were criticising bert for not making enough tactical changes and not having plan B and blah blah and now once we have someone who is a tactical genius, we go and find something..his ego…i dont understand why we are so after his big ego…if ego was such a problem for us to deal we would never have few of our current stars…and its not the right of the players to only have egos…and maybe we need a coach who has a bigger ego to stem others…arent we all too critical for anything that happens…or is it our nature to crib about everything that goes on in this world…tell me if it was nt van gaal who would u have picked since frank had already said no…so of all the options this is the best choice we have..also we had been crying loud about non attacking playing style and now that you are sure to get one probably at the expense of defence, you r not happy…
    now you say we want pragmatic style and italy like playing…atleast stick to what ur views are..i am all in for this guy…HUP HOLLAND HUP..

  64. 4-3-3

    ——-van der Vaart—–Strootman/Schaars/Clasie
    ——Robben—— Huntelaar—–van Persie

    ————Sneijder———-van der Vaart—
    ——Robben—— Huntelaar—–van Persie

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