Louis van Gaal insisted that Manchester United would be his last managerial position before he retired to his holiday home in the Algarve with wife Truus. But as we speak, the Dutchman may well be pleading for clemency amid reports he's in the running to take charge of the Belgian national team.
The Belgian Red Devils sacked coach Marc Wilmots in the wake of two very disappointing major tournament performances — eliminated in the quarterfinals of both the 2014 World Cup and Euro 2016 — and there's the risk their golden generation will pass without failing to deliver on its promise. With top talent in the likes of Eden Hazard, Kevin De Bruyne and Radja Nainggolan, they've got reason to think they can seriously compete in major tournaments.
Van Gaal has form at international level, dragging a fairly poor Netherlands side to the semifinals of the World Cup in Brazil two years ago. But if he is to take charge of Belgium, he'll have to lower his wage demands. Quoted in the Sun, chief of the Belgian FA, Gerard Linard, said:
“We do not have the budget of France, Spain, or Germany, and Louis van Gaal has high wages which are not within our budget. To become Belgium manager, he needs to lower his wages.”
Perhaps the opportunity to work with Marouane Fellaini once again will prove too great a lure for van Gaal ...