“Levy missed his chance! – Van Gaal says Spurs missed opportunity to hire him ahead of Pochettino

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Manager says he almost signed for Tottenham before being convinced to join Manchester United

Louis van Gaal says he was set to take over at Tottenham in 2014 as the Dutch manager revealed he only ended up at Manchester United because Daniel Levy ‘missed the opportunity’ while waiting too long to offer him a contract.At the time, Van Gaal was nearing the end of his time managing his native Netherlands, while Tottenham were looking for a new coach after Tim Sherwood’s tenure.

The Dutch boss was heavily linked to work, with Van Gaal admitting he had met Levy to discuss work and was open to joining Spurs.

However, as talks delayed, United offered to take over from David Moyes.

In the end, Spurs’ delay allowed Man Utd to rush for Van Gaal, although Tottenham did well by hiring Mauricio Pochettino that year.

“Daniel Levy flew to Holland on a private jet and came to my house, where we talked for several hours,” Van Gaal said. FourFourTwo.

“He even stayed to watch the Southampton-Spurs game later in the afternoon. [which Spurs won 3-2]. He asked me what I thought of this game, so it was also kind of a test.

“When Levy wanted to leave in the evening, I noticed that there were television cameras outside my house. A Dutch broadcaster had heard that he was in the Netherlands and guessed that he would be there for me.

“As we wanted to remain silent, I called my neighbor to ask if he could take her in his car. As they did, with Levy hiding in the backseat, I opened the front door and approached the reporters to ask them what they were doing. were doing.

“It worked really well – they were taken by surprise. As a coach, timing is essential! But it took a long time for Spurs to make a firm offer, and United approached me in the meantime. They acted much faster.

“I also liked the idea of ​​going there, to coach the number one club in England – as I had done before in Holland, Spain and Germany. If Spurs had come up with a concrete offer earlier, I would have signed for them. .

“Spurs were actually a club that I liked when I was younger because I was a huge fan of Jimmy Greaves. I told Levy that too, but he missed the opportunity by waiting so long. ”

Van Gaal then managed Man Utd for two seasons, winning the FA Cup in 2015-16 before being sacked days later.

In the years since his departure, Wayne Rooney called Van Gaal ‘the best coach I have worked with’ and, despite the unceremonious end of his tenure, the manager says he is proud to have earned the praise of l ‘attacker.

“These things were really great to read,” Van Gaal said. “I have also been a very demanding coach, so if the players are still saying these things about me, it’s especially nice.

“I gave Wayne the title of captain to keep him within the discipline and the team’s code of conduct, which he sometimes struggled with. A new period was starting and he was one of the older players, so I thought that could have a positive influence on him. And he was an exceptional player, of course. ”

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