I Have Not Retired, Only Taking A Sabbatical – Louis Van Gaal

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Former Manchester United manager, Louis van Gaal says he has not retired from coaching but is instead taking a sabbatical until the summer. The 65-year-old who has been out of work since leaving Old Trafford in May was on Monday reported to have retired from his 26-year coaching career.

Van Gaal was quoted as saying in Dutch newspaper De Telegraaf:

“So much has happened in my family, you become a human being again with your nose pressed to the facts.

“I thought maybe I would stop, then I thought it would be a sabbatical, but now I do not think I will return to coaching.” 

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Dutch newspaper De Telegraaf said Van Gaal had ended his coaching career, with the sudden death of his son-in-law influencing his decision. But he told Spanish radio station Cadena Ser that although retiring was a possibility, it is not “definitive”.

“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 that I’ve retired, not at this moment, but I’ll decide at the end of my sabbatical, next June or July.”

The Dutchman also revealed he had turned down the opportunity to coach struggling Spanish club, Valencia last month.

Van Gaal began his coaching career in the Netherlands with AZ Alkmaar as his assistant coach in 1986 after a short stint as a player with the club. Ajax coach Leo Beenhakker appointed him his assistant in 1989 after a spell coaching the youth team and Van Gaal took over from Beenhakker when he left in September 1991.

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After a successful career in his native Netherlands, as well as in Spain and Germany, he got his first chance to manage in the Barclays Premier League when he was named the successor to David Moyes at Manchester United in May 2014.