After Ronald Koeman’s departure to Barcelona, the KNVB are once again on the lookout for a new Netherlands head coach. Michael Bell takes a look at the candidates to be the new Oranje boss.

Frank de Boer

He would not be a popular choice among fans, but the KNVB will be considering a move for the former defender.

De Boer’s managerial career got off to a great start with four Eredivisie titles, but since leaving Ajax, he has been on a downward spiral. Spells in charge of Inter Milan, Crystal Palace, and most recently Atlanta United ended up with De Boer sacked and widely criticised for his methods and man-management.

However, De Boer knows the Eredivisie well, has been an Oranje assistant before, is unattached, and will be looking for a role to get his career back on track.

The KNVB will definitely be considering a move for the 50-year-old despite his recent failures.

Possibility: Very likely. Possibly the most likely candidate if the KNVB wants to take the easy option.

Mark van Bommel

Looking for a job since leaving PSV Eindhoven last season, Mark van Bommel is another name that will undoubtedly be linked with the position.

The former midfielder was recently linked with the Bayern Munich II job but didn’t get it. However, he could apply for the Oranje job with no other roles currently on the table

The KNVB could also ask Van Bommel’s father-in law Bert van Marwijk to act as his assistant with any appointment.

Again Van Bommel knows the Eredivisie well and would have some respect in the Netherlands dressing room. However, his lack of success and experience would see his appointment met with an underwhelming response.

Possibility: Van Bommel has a chance, but the KNVB may opt for someone with more experience.

Clarence Seedorf

The 44-year-old has not had any success in his managerial career so far, but could be an option for the KNVB.

Seedorf has made no secret of his desire to return to coaching after short spells in charge of AC Milan, Shenzhen, Deportivo La Coruna, and the Cameroon national team all ended in failure.

Seedorf would jump at the chance to manage Oranje but the KNVB would have to pair him with an experienced assistant for it to work. The former midfielder doesn’t have the experience or success so far to get the job outright.

Possibility: Unlikely to happen. Not experienced enough.

Arsene Wenger

A strange rumour in the Dutch press earlier this week linked the former Arsenal coach with the job, and many fans would be pleased with his appointment.

The 70-year-old denied claims that he had offered himself to the KNVB and is said to be happy with his position with FIFA.

However, Wenger would play the attacking football that would go down well with Oranje fans and would show some ambition from the KNVB.

The Frenchman could be paired with Dennis Bergkamp as an assist.

Possibility: Very unlikely

Peter Bosz

Bosz has made it clear he dreams of managing Netherlands at some point but would he leave Bayer Leverkusen for the role?

The former Ajax and Borussia Dortmund boss prefers an attacking brand of football and would be popular choice among Netherlands fans.

However, Bosz only recently extended his contract in Germany and is on high wages. The KNVB would also have to pay a high release clause to free him from Leverkusen.

Bosz will one day be Oranje boss but it may be a case of the right man but wrong time.

Possibility: Unlikely due to contract and finances.

Erik ten Hag

The current Ajax boss is another successful Dutch coach who will be linked with the position.

Ten Hag is thought to be one of the most sought after young coaches in Europe after guiding Ajax to the Champions League semi-finals in 2019. He also won the Eredivisie title and Ajax were top of the league before coronavirus ended last season.

Ten Hag would fit the Oranje philosophy and be a popular choice, but the Netherlands job is probably coming at the wrong time.

The former Utrecht boss is very unlikely to depart Ajax for the national team, and would only leave for another top job around Europe. He was linked with Bayern Munich earlier in the year, but that position went elsewhere.

Possibility: Very unlikely. Ten Hag will want to remain in club management.

Louis van Gaal

Can the KNVB tempt Louis van Gaal out of retirement for one last job?

Van Gaal has twice managed Netherlands before, having resigned after failing to reach the 2002 World Cup in his first spell. Then in 2014, Van Gaal led Oranjge to the World Cup semi-finals before a penalty shootout loss to Argentina.

Van Gaal then took charge of Manchester United and has not worked since being sacked in 2016. The 69-year-old has been tempted by other roles but has remained in retirement.

However, could the KNVB tempt Van Gaal to accept the role once again and give him the chance to lift the Euro 2020 trophy?

Possibility: 50/50 could Van Gaal really turn down the chance if asked?

Phillip Cocu

The current Derby County boss is another big name Dutch coach to have already been linked with the role.

The former PSV Eindhoven and Fenerbahce boss guided Derby County to 10th spot in the Championship last season and is in the middle of a project to get the club promoted.

However, could the former midfielder be tempted into taking on the national team position?

The 49-year-old spent four years as an assistant coach with the Netherlands and would be a popular choice among fans if the KNVB were to approach him.

However, like Bosz and Ten Hag, he is another likely to see the national team job as coming too soon. His contract and release clause would also be difficult for the KNVB.

Possibility: Not likely. He will probably remain loyal to Derby County.

Giovanni van Bronckhorst

With his time in China not going to plan so far, could Van Bronckhorst be tempted into heading home?

Van Bronckhorst led Feyenoord to the Eredivisie title, before a turbulent final campaign in charge of the club led to him departing for Guanzhou R&F

However, in China he has won only once in his opening five games in charge, and he could be open for an early departure.

The former left-back likes an attacking style of play and knows the Eredivisie well. The Netherlands job could also be used as a springboard to other club positions in Europe.

Possibility: Not likely. He is lacking experience and has only just got started in China.

Henk ten Cate

A name that has always been linked with the national team, without actually being given the job.

The 65-year-old is well respected in the Netherlands and has held various positions in club football from Ajax head coach to assistant with Chelsea and Barcelona.

He would jump at the chance of taking on the Netherlands role after years working in the middle east. He could also take a younger coach under his wing, and has also been rumoured with a dual role alongside Ruud Gullit.

Possibility: Has the experience that the KNVB wants. Could be a good option.

Who would you like to be named Netherlands boss? Let us know in the comments section.




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