Stoichkov said he was one of the “many who suffered” by working with van Gaal, who then returned to the Nou camp from 2002 to 2003.
Meanwhile, van Gaal had the talented Argentinian midfielder Juan Roman Riquelme in his squad, but he too only lasted a year after failing to impress with a Barça jersey.
Stoichkov told Radio Impacto: “Why didn’t Riquelme triumph at Barça? Because he had a *** head like Van Gaal as a coach.
“Is that clear, right?
“He didn’t succeed because of the way Van Gaal put him on the field. But even so, the first year in Barcelona, he also really enjoyed it.
“I appreciated his goals, assists, games, strides, but when you come who wants to invent something from something else, it’s impossible.
” He [van Gaal] has done good things that need to be recognized but many have suffered in football because of its nonsense. ”
Stoichkov was entering his second visit to Barcelona when van Gaal arrived in 1997.
The Bulgarian striker had been one of the key figures in Johan Cruyff’s winning teams, winning the Ballon d’Or before a year in Italy with Parma.
But he failed to agree with van Gaal, and left shortly after.
“I suffered it,” added Stoichkov. “He walked into the locker room and said there was a lot of Cruyffism.
Mirror the best football stories
“And of course, I thought, ‘Where is Johan and where are you? There was a big difference. ”
Van Gaal had signed the aforementioned Riquelme to replace the Brazilian superstar Rivaldo, whom he released on the basis of a free transfer, even though the attacker still had a year on his contract.
Upon leaving, Rivaldo said, “Van Gaal is the main cause of my departure. I don’t like Van Gaal, and I’m sure he doesn’t like me either. ”
Sign up for Mirror Football here for the latest news and transfer gossip.