Louis van Gaal during the Dutch Eredivisie match between sbv Excelsior Rotterdam and FC Groningen at Van Donge & De Roo stadium on December 17, 2017 in Rotterdam, The Netherlands(Photo by VI Images via Getty Images)
Former Manchester United boss Louis van Gaal has said he’d only come out of retirement if he were given the opportunity to “get one over” on his old team by taking charge of one of their rivals.
According to the Mirror, he told De Telegraaf: “I will probably not manage a club anymore. I would make one exception—if a big English club comes for me, then I would do it. Because then I can get the chance to get one over on Manchester United.”
The 66-year-old has not managed since he was sacked by United last year two days after winning the FA Cup.
Van Gaal was two years into a three-year deal at Old Trafford, having guided the Red Devils to fourth in his first season and fifth in his second, missing out on the UEFA Champions League to Manchester City on goal difference.
The Dutchman is unhappy with executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward for approaching his successor, Jose Mourinho, while he was still at the club. He added: “Woodward should have come to me, and we could have worked on that. I have nothing against Jose.”
Mourinho was Van Gaal’s assistant at Barcelona, whom he managed from 1997 to 2000.
The Red Devils had a reasonable season in Van Gaal’s first year—at least compared to David Moyes’ year in charge, in which they finished seventh—as they scored 62 goals and finished in the top four.
However, a dire second campaign saw them muster just 49 goals as they failed to score in 10 Premier League matches, and they never managed more than three in a single league game.
United were somewhat improved last year as they scored 54 goals, but they were held to a draw in 15 Premier League matches, and those cracks were papered over by winning the EFL Cup and the UEFA Europa League.
While United are 11 points back on league leaders Manchester City and will be disappointed by their performances in a number of big games this season, the Red Devils have been considerably better on the whole.