Reports on a Sunday newspaper suggest that Manchester United could be looking at appointing a Dutch duo at Old Trafford, were David Moyes to be relieved of his duties at the end of the season, which, on current form, would be a rather sensible choice, given how dismally poor United have been under the former Everton manager.
Louis Van Gaal and Frank de Boer are being considered as replacements for Moyes, with Van Gaal thought to be a perfect fit, given his pedigree and experience in international football, while de Boer would be an ideal assistant to the former Ajax, Barcelona and Bayern manager, a role he’s already familiar with, given he was part of Holland’s coaching staff at the World Cup in 2010.
With Moyes running out of time and excuses, even those who had defended him through his first dismal season have come to realise that he’s not the right man for the job, the dire football on offer made even more insufferable by a dramatic lack of results that has United sitting seventh on the table.
Moyes is on a six-year deal but, should things not improve between now and the end of the season, United could decide to part ways with him, for while Manchester United do not sack managers, having to sit through another season as painful as this it’s simply unconceivable, on and off the pitch.
Having missed out on Pep Guardiola and Jose Mourinho and with Jurgen Klopp tied to a new contract that will keep him at Dortmund until 2018, United’s options are numbered and among those available Van Gaal might just be the best bet, for he’s a manager of great experience and, even more importantly, one who has won trophies almost with every club he’s coached.
The 62-year-old has also never been reluctant to blood youngsters into the first team, particularly during his time with Ajax and AZ Alkmaar, nor does he come across as the sort of manager who looks uncertain under pressure. If anything, much like Mourinho and Fergie, Van Gaal’s attritional style often means that he thrives under pressure and he’s an excellent motivator.
The Dutchman has already disclosed that he’ll leave his post as Holland manager after the World Cup and has made clear that he’d love to work in the Premier League, prompting Tottenham Hotspur to be installed as firm favourites to land his services, as Daniel Levy seeks a replacement for Tim Sherwood but should the United job become available, it could be too tempting for Van Gaal.
De Boer, meanwhile, has won the last three Eredivisie titles with Ajax, through a mixture of attacking football and youth (sounds familiar?) and while the Amsterdam club has never performed particularly in well under de Boer’s tutelage, the former Ajax defender is one of the brightest young managers in Europe and would be a perfect assistant to Louis Van Gaal.
Having apparently lost the dressing room, Moyes has 11 games to at least partially steady the ship to ensure he’ll still be in charge come next season, but even that might not be enough if the club decides to pull the plug on him.