Louis van Gaal's frosty relationship with Ronald Koeman could end Shaw deal hopes

Louis Van Gaal

Ronald Koeman was once van Gaal's assistant at Barcelona - now the two do not get on. What does that mean for Luke Shaw?

The Premier League has gone a bit Dutch this summer, with two top clubs replacing their departing gaffers with men from The Netherlands. Manchester United have replaced the sacked David Moyes with Dutch coach Louis van Gaal whilst Southampton have appointed Ronald Koeman as the replacement for Tottenham's new boss, Mauricio Pochettino.

And these two Dutchman have a mixed history.

The pair first linked up back in 1998 - when Louis van Gaal appointed him as the assistant coach at Spanish giants Barcelona.

That ended in the year 2000. Koeman jumped ship to takeover at Eredivisie side Vitesse Arnhem, with Van Gaal's blessing, while LvG resigned at the end of the season - after losing out on the La Liga title to Deportivo La Coruna.

Koeman went on to become a great success at Vitesse, earning himself the opportunity to work at Ajax as head coach and it was here the two met again.

Van Gaal was coming off the back of two disappointing management spells. He failed to take Holland to the World Cup in 2002 and was sacked by Barcelona in 2003, with the Catalan giants hovering above La Liga's relegation zone. But he was appointed technical director at Ajax in 2004, which is where he and Koeman finally came to blows.

Apparently he watched Koeman's training sessions at a camp in Portugal like a headmaster assessing a pupil - which did not go down well with Koeman, now a successful manager in his own right. Van Gaal criticised Koeman in his autobiography saying he didn't have the players in hand and that he had to separate Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Rafael van der Vaart from a fight because Koeman was too weak.

He sold Zlatan, who had become a problem, but Koeman complained in the press and shortly after Van Gaal stepped down as technical director - citing 'internal conflict'.

The pairs relationship remains frosty. Once their wives were best of friends, but now they reportedly barely speak.

So what does all this mean to Manchester United's transfer plans. The Red Devils are reportedly keen on the signature of Southampton left-back Luke Shaw, who has his heart set on a £27 million switch to Old Trafford.

But Koeman will absolutely fight tooth and nail to ensure that if Shaw leaves it is not to Van Gaal's United. But the good news is this. Koeman was previously manager at Feyenoord and would never have sold Van Gaal Daley Blind, his reported Shaw back-up option.

When one door closes, another one opens. And that is the circle of life.

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