Great confidence in Van Gaal: ‘The best team builder in Dutch football’

According to many people, Louis van Gaal is the right man to coach the Netherlands on the World Cup in Qatar. This will be the last trick for Van Gaal. The Orange squad will play the first game in the final tournament on Monday, Senegal will then be the opponent.

Michael van Praag, former chairman of Ajax, has hope in Van Gaal and his selection. ‘I have a lot of confidence in it, because Louis has great qualities as a team builder,’ Van Praag tells The Telegraph. “I think he is the best team builder in Dutch football.” In this way, the former Ajax coach pays attention to everyone. ‘After the Netherlands-Belgium I was chatting with him and then Remko Pasveer’s wife passed by. Then he talked to her for ten minutes. That’s Louis.’

Van Praag looks back on his time with Van Gaal at Ajax. Under Van Gaal, the team from Amsterdam won the European Cup in 1995. ‘We wanted to take that cup to the supporters’ associations, but nothing came of it’, continues Van Praag. “Louis took that Cup with the Big Ears and put it in the room where the uniforms were washed and ironed for the team. The people in that laundry room had also had their share of the success and that’s why the cup had to be there for a week. That’s typical Louis. He hasn’t changed anything in that regard.’

Van der Lem about Van Gaal

Gerard van der Lem also looks with confidence to the upcoming World Cup. Van der Lem has worked with Van Gaal for years and knows the trainer like no other. “It’s still the old Louis. Mentally he is razor sharp. He is without a doubt the best man for the job. He commands so much respect from the players. I hope he will do well and I think he will do well.” In addition, Van der Lem hopes that Van Gaal will keep it up physically. The national coach has had a nasty illness. ‘I hope that such a big tournament with everything that comes with it is not too hard for him physically. But he has a young staff around him so that should be fine.’

Andries Jonker tells how well Van Gaal has kept up with the times. “He has had to adapt to all the developments of this time in order to continue to touch players,” says the national coach of the Orange Lionesses. ‘A small example: Louis sent a player to Ajax in the 1990s because he was wearing white football boots. He now also accepts all colors of kicks.’ Now Jonker sees another version of Van Gaal. ‘The Louis from then has become a different Louis, but still himself in clarity and professionalism’, says Jonker.

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