The Liverpool star singled out exception in a newspaper report as the attacker in a campaign to prevent the appointment
Virgil van Dijk denied that he had led the Dutch group in an uprising against the return of Louis van Gaal, and described the story that was being spread in the media as ‘completely false’.
The Netherlands are currently on the lookout for a new head coach following the resignation of Frank de Boer, who has taken full responsibility for the team’s disappointing exit from the last 16 Euro 2020 by the Czech Republic.
Van Gaal has filled the post twice already and was considered the most likely replacement for De Boer, but The mirror has published an article claiming that Van Dijk is one of several members of the national team that is rallying to try to prevent the appointment.
What was said?
The report states that Van Dijk and Co wanted the former Chelsea assistant Henk ten Cate to take over, but the Dutch Football Federation (KNVB) plans to lure Van Gaal out of his pension only a few weeks before his 70th birthday.
However, the Liverpool star took to social media to refute the allegations.
“This story is completely false,” Van Dijk wrote on Twitter. “It’s never been so important for journalists to tell the truth and not just make things up. Shame on you, Mr Mullock.”
Will Van Gaal be the Netherlands’ next coach?
Van Gaal has not had a job since being sacked by Manchester United in 2016, and in 2019 officially announced his retirement from management and football in all forms.
The Dutchman has enjoyed an extremely successful career of 25 years in coaching, which includes successful awards at Ajax, Barcelona and Bayern Munich, and he has a medal of the Champions League winner, two La Liga titles and one Bundesliga crown on his illustrious resume.
Van Gaal also spent a total of four years in charge of affairs in the Netherlands over two separate tournaments, which led them to a third place during the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.
It has been reported that the former United boss will return to lead his country once a number of tax issues have been resolved after his long-term sabbatical in Portugal, but the KNVB board has not yet given its official approval.
Van Dijk’s international career
Van Dijk made his international debut in 2015 and has since scored 38 games for the Netherlands and scored four goals.
The Liverpool midfielder was headlining his country in the 2019 UEFA Nations League final, which they lost to Portugal but were unable to perform at this summer’s European Championships.
Van Dijk has decided to continue with the recovery of a knee operation instead of joining De Boer’s group, but he must be fit for the start of Liverpool’s 2021-22 campaign.