The Netherlands need a new coach: Meet the Prospects

Published 04/03/2017, 3:56 PM EDT
Assistant trainer Danny Blind of Holland during the friendly match between the Netherlands and Colombia at the Amsterdam Arena on November 19, 2013 in Amsterdam, The Netherlands


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Following their defeat to Bulgaria, the Netherlands are in danger of failing to reach a second successive major international tournament after the defeat left them fourth in Group A, six points adrift of leaders France and three behind second-placed Sweden. Danny Blind was sacked on Sunday and so here we look at some of the most suited coaches in the world to replace him at the moment.

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Louis van Gaal: The favourite to land the job with the bookmakers, it would be his third term as coach of the Oranje. His second term with the national side saw the team reach the semi-finals of the 2014 World Cup and the fans woudl be more than excited to see him return to the chair. Many of the players already have that connection already established with the 65-year-old and he would slot right back in into the position. Signing him, the KNVB would hope for the Netherlands to turn back into the team from the 2014 World Cup. After his time at Manchester United, where he failed to impress, van Gaal has denied retirement earlier this year but it is also being reported that Van Gaal could just be playing a role in assisting the KNVB in finding Blind’s replacement.

Jürgen Klinsmann: The Dutch football association (KNVB) has indicated that a foreign coach is also a possibility and the German legend Jürgen Klinsmann fits the bill perfectly. The 52-year-old won the World Cup as a player and was head coach of the German national team at the 2006 World Cup. Klinsmann spent five years as the coach of the United States but his spell couldn’t turn many heads. If the German is signed, he would become the first foreign manager of the Dutch team since the Austrian Ernst Happel guided them to the 1978 World Cup final. Klinsmann got Germany back to playing attractive attacking football and may be the man to rejuvenate Oranje.

Frank de Boer: Possibly the most pragmatic choice, de Boer has been lauded for his work with Ajax early in his managerial career with four straight Eredevise titles. But with a rocky final season at Ajax and a disaster of a season at Inter Milan, de Boer is out of a contract as of now. Being a legend for his time as a player at Ajax, he is no stranger to the Dutch style and is also well versed in the 4-3-3 tradition of the national side and this could probably turn the KNVB towards him. Oranje need a coach who has the ability to fill the holes their leaky defence contains and de Boer could be that person for them.

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Ronald Koeman: Everton bound Koeman was the most sought after name when Louis van Gaal left the Oranje to pick up the reels at Manchester United. The then Feyenoord coach had openly stated that he was interested in the job but the Dutch Federation went with Guus Hiddink instead. Back to back top half finishes with Southampton and having a go at a European qualification spot with Everton, Koeman also has attracted attention from the Catalans and the KNVB would probably find it difficult to get his signature now. But the Dutch has been reported by the Liverpool Echo to rule himself out of the running for the job stating that “now is not that the time”.

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Jaap Stam: His career as a head coach only began last year, but his Reading side is already looking like a Premier League side. Fourth on the table in the Championship, Stam’s team has won 21 matches out of 39. Earlier, Stam worked with Jong Ajax as the assistant manager for two seasons. With his contract only running till the summer and his outspoken disdain at the uncertainty at Reading, chances of him being there come summer look bleak. West Ham have also been linked with the Dutch coach but Netherlands also could be a possible destination for the celebrated defender.

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Shreyas Tanay

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