I have not retired – Louis van Gaal

Louis van Gaal says he is on sabbatical
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Louis van Gaal says he is on sabbatical

Former Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal says has not retired, but is instead taking a sabbatical until the summer.

The 65-year-old has been out of work since leaving Old Trafford in May.

On Monday, 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”.

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

“Whether I continue or not will also depend on the offers I get,” he added.

“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.”

Van Gaal won seven national titles with Ajax, Barcelona, Bayern Munich and AZ before being appointed Manchester United boss in May 2014.

He guided the Red Devils to the FA Cup, as well as a fifth-place finish in the Premier League, before being replaced by Jose Mourinho.

Before his career as a coach, Van Gaal played as a midfielder for Royal Antwerp, Telstar, Sparta Rotterdam, Ajax and AZ.

He is also a fully qualified physical education teacher and has worked as such at high schools during various stages of his career as a semi-professional footballer.

After a brief spell as coach at AZ, Van Gaal served as assistant coach under Leo Beenhakker at Ajax and eventually took over as head coach in 1991.

Under his lead, the club won three Eredivisie titles, the UEFA Cup, and the Champions League.

He moved to Barcelona in 1997 and won two Spanish league titles and one Copa del Rey.

After some disagreements at Barcelona, he was appointed coach of the Netherlands national team, but failed to qualify for the 2002 World Cup.