Louis van Gaal, the former Manchester United manager, has revealed that he hasn’t yet retired from management and is still open to job offers. Earlier this week, news spread about the Dutchman hanging up his managerial boots after excerpts from his interview with Dutch newspaper De Telegraaf were published.
But, the Champions League-winning manager did an about turn on his retirement plans as he said to Spanish radio station Cadena Ser on Tuesday that he is on a sabbatical and plans to make a return to management next season, although retirement is still a possibility.
“Whether I continue or not will also depend on the offers I get.
“I’ve coached many clubs and I think it’s very difficult to improve on that level of clubs. It’s not true I’ve retired, not at this moment, but I’ll decide at the end of my sabbatical, next June or July,” Van Gaal said.
Although he has already rejected an offer from an Asian club and admitted to rebuffing Valencia’s advances last month, the latest betting odds on which club Van Gaal will manage next are sparse – he’s unlikely to go for a club without a substantial pay package or pedigree, and he doesn’t want to move out of Europe.
Valencia are without a permanent manager and are currently managed by matchday delegate Voro, while the financial might of Asian clubs has been little secret over the past year or two, particularly in China. With the experience and pedigree Van Gaal has, it is no surprise he is still very much a wanted man.
Van Gaal was relieved of his duties as the United manager at the end of last season despite leading the club to an FA Cup win. The 65-year-old has been out of work since.
In the interview with De Telegraaf, Van Gaal cited “events in his family” that had caused him to not consider a lucrative deal with an Asian club that would have fetched him £11m per season.
The number of people who thought Van Gaal’s retirement would signal the end of an era of a managerial behemoth will now rest assured that they have not seen the last of the Dutchman.
In between his club stints, he also had two spells as the manager of the Dutch national team, famously leading the Oranje to a third place finish in the 2014 World Cup.