The experienced Netherlands coach has told friends he wants to replace David Moyes at Old Trafford after holding initial talks with a United delegation last week
By Wayne Veysey | Chief Correspondent
Louis van Gaal wants to succeed David Moyes as Manchester United manager, Goal understands.
The Dutchman has told friends he is “very keen” on taking over at Old Trafford when his stint in charge of the Netherlands finishes after the World Cup.
As reported by Goal, Van Gaal met with a United delegation last week and further talks are expected to take place as the club step up the process of finding a successor to Moyes.
Jurgen Klopp has also been approached by United but the Borussia Dortmund manager publicly distanced himself from the job on Tuesday morning.
“Man Utd is a great club and I feel very familiar with their wonderful fans,” Klopp was quoted as saying in the Guardian. ‘But my commitment to Borussia Dortmund and the people is not breakable.”
Van Gaal, who turns 63 in August, would represent a relatively short-term fix and a considerable departure from the long-term planning trumpeted by United in the wake of Moyes’ appointment 11 months ago.
Some figures in the United boardroom have reservations about the Dutchman’s management style and abrasive reputation.
However, his outstanding CV, which features league titles in three countries, and long track record of success, coupled with his immediate availability, has impressed the Glazer family, who are leading the hunt for Moyes’ successor.
The Scot was sacked by United on Tuesday morning and player-coach Ryan Giggs has been placed in caretaker charge of the club until the end of the season.
Giggs’ lack of managerial experience is likely to count against him in the coming weeks as United prepare to make their second appointment in a year.
Van Gaal, who has been installed as the favourite to replace Moyes, has made no secret of his desire to coach a Premier League club after the World Cup.
The former Real Madrid, Bayern Munich and Ajax boss has already held talks with Tottenham but the Spurs hierarchy accept they would not be able to stop Van Gaal joining United if he was offered the job.
The Dutchman regards United as one of the world’s top clubs and believes they would represent a perfect final chapter of what has been a glittering coaching career.
Van Gaal is expecting further contact from United in the coming days but the Glazers, the American family who own the club, are also expected to sound out several managerial big guns.
These could include Real Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti and, even more intriguingly, Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho, who was ignored last year when Sir Alex Ferguson recommended Moyes to be his successor.
The Glazers are prepared to hand the new man a transfer kitty of more than £150 million to reshape a squad that has failed dismally this season.
Moyes was sacked two days after it became mathematically impossible for United to seal a top-four Premier League finish and compete in next season’s Champions League.
It is believed that it had been written into the six-year contract Moyes signed last summer that he would only get a year’s pay-off if he was sacked after finishing outside of the top four.