Dubai: Former Netherlands midfielder Ronald de Boer has tipped his compatriot Louis van Gaal to be a resounding success if he becomes Tottenham Hotspur boss in the summer.
De Boer, who won the 1995 Champions League under Van Gaal at Ajax Amsterdam and played for him at Barcelona between 1998 and 2000, hailed the 62-year-old’s tactical nous and knack of nurturing young players.
The pair’s fellow Dutchman Ruud Gullit claimed on Saturday that Van Gaal’s move to Spurs is ‘a done deal’, a move Ajax youth coach De Boer heartily approves of.
Speaking in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, where he took part in a legends football match to promote the Laureus World Sports Awards last week, De Boer said: “He is one of the best coaches in the world and can really prepare a team. He can find weakness in any opponent and present them with solid opposition as he analyses the game really well.
“He has so much quality he would be successful in England, especially if he is given time to set out his team.”
Van Gaal has also been linked with replacing beleaguered Manchester United boss David Moyes, and De Boer believes his fellow countryman’s devotion to youth development would be appreciated at either the Red Devils or Spurs.
The 43-year-old said: “At Bayern Munich he won the Bundesliga and got to the final of the Champions League [in 2010] with young players like Thomas Muller, Holger Badstuber and others.
“No one had heard of them, but now everyone is talking about them. He has an eye for talent.”
Van Gaal, who is due to be replaced as Netherlands coach after this year’s World Cup by Guus Hiddink, recently expressed an interest in working in England for the first time.
Tottenham gave Tim Sherwood an 18-month contract as head coach in December, but Spurs’ struggle to challenge for a Champions League place has seen his position come under scrutiny.
Gullit, a former Netherlands player, claims that Van Gaal has visited the home of Spurs chairman Daniel Levy, telling BBC Radio 5 Live: “I know for sure he was at Van Gaal’s house, the chairman. I think it’s a done deal, but you never know.”
Van Gaal, who has previously coached Ajax, Barcelona, AZ Alkmaar and Bayern Munich, recently said: “I’ve always said that I want to work in the Premier League, so there’s a chance.”
A Spurs source quoted by the BBC said: “We don’t comment on speculation.”
Sherwood, 45, has overseen 21 matches in the Spurs dug-out since succeeding the sacked Andre Villas-Boas, with a record of 10 wins, three draws, and eight defeats prior to Sunday’s game at Liverpool.