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Van Gaal turns back Dutch clock

Louis Van Gaal has turned to Guus Hiddink to revitalise the Netherlands national team.

Van Gaal admitted he was using some of Hiddink’s tactics to steer the Dutch back to the top in world football.

The Oranje left Euro 2012 at the group stage, failing to register a single point, and this development prompted the exit of Bert Van Marwijk.

Van Gaal was appointed shortly after, and this decision has brought almost immediate results, with the Netherlands currently on a five-match unbeaten run.

The former Bayern Munich coach conceded that he hopes for a repeat of the Oranje’s resurrection after their disappointing Euro 1996 campaign, and admitted that he is using exactly the same methods Hiddink did at the time to achieve a turn in fortunes.

“After Euro 2012 everyone could read, see and hear that relations between some players were strained,” the 61-year-old said in an interview with De Voetbaltrainer.

“I used old footage as an introduction for my first meeting with the team. I chose an episode of Andere Tijden Sport (a Dutch programme) about what went wrong at Euro 1996 and what Guus Hiddink did to make the World Cup 1998 such a success two years later.

“New rules and agreements about how to treat each other were very important back then.

“It was nice that Patrick Kluivert (now Netherlands’ assistant coach) featured in that episode and he was in the room for the meeting,” he added.

Sun 18 November, 2012
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