Dick Advocaat was appointed Sunderland boss on Tuesday morning and Michael Bell gives you the lowdown on all you need to know about the 67-year-old.

advocaat jjsjsBackground

He may be known as Dick Advocaat, but he was born Dirk Nicolaas Advocaat in the Hague on the 27th of September 1947.

Playing Career

Advocaat started his career with Den Haag as a tenacious defensive midfielder, spending seven years at his home town club and winning the KNVB Cup, before leaving for spells with Roda JC, VVV Venlo, and a stint in America with Chicago Sting. Advocaat returned to Netherlands in 1980 to join Sparta Rotterdam, before ending his career with spells at K.Berchem Sport and Utrecht. Advocaat never earned a cap for the Dutch national team, but played more than 540 games in his career, scoring 28 goals.

Coaching Career

Advocaat balanced playing football with a career as a PE teacher, and got his first coaching job at the age of 31 with amateur side DSVP. In four seasons with DSVP, Advocaat showed his immense promise, overseeing three consecutive promotions and going on a run of 67 games unbeaten.

The legendary Ajax coach Rinus Michels then took Advocaat to be his assistant with the Dutch national team between and it was here that he got his nickname of the “little general” in relatation to Michels who was known as the “General”. Advocaat left after three years as Michels protege to his first coaching job at a professional club in HFC Haarlem. After two years Advocaat then joined SVV, and guided the club to the Eredivisie, before being sacked after the club merged with Dordrecht.

Advocaat was then named as the successor to Michels as Netherlands coach, but his two years in charge of the national team where not easy. Advocaat lost his first two games in charge, fell out with Ruud Gullit, leading the midfielder to retire from international football, and although he led Netherlands to the 1994 World Cup, he left after being knocked out in the quarter finals to Brazil.

Advocaat then took charge of PSV for four years, helping them win the Eredivisie title in 1997, but left to join Scottish side Glasgow Rangers. In Scotland Dick Advocaat enjoyed his most successful spells as a coach, winning a domestic treble in the 1998-99 season, and a double in the next campaign. Advocaat then moved upstairs to become technical director, but was again named Netherlands boss after Louis van Gaal failed to reach the 2002 World Cup.

Under his second spell, Netherlands qualified for the European Championships in 2004, but only after a play-off with Scotland. In the tournament the Oranje survived a tricky group with Germany and the Czech Republic but were eventually knocked out in the semi-finals by Portugal, and Advocaat resigned.

Short spells in charge of Borussia Monchengladbach, UAE and South Korea followed before Advocaat found success again in Russia with Zenit st Petersburg. The little general led the club to the Russian Premier League title and the UEFA Cup, beating old club Rangers in the final. After two years in Russia Advocaat had unsuccessful and short spells with AZ, Belgium, and the Russian national team before returning to PSV in order to oversee the club for a season after Fred Rutten was sacked. After a year, Advocaat left PSV for another short spell in charge of AZ Alkmaar. Advocaat’s last job was a short spell with the Serbian national team, with the Dutchman quitting after only four matches due to pressure from fans.

Managerial record: 884 games in charge, 482 wins, 191 draws, and 211 losses. A win percentage of 54.2%

Coaching and playing Style

Advocaat is a strict and old fashioned coach who demands 100% effort from players in training and on the pitch. He is very organised, disciplined and will have his say on every aspect at Sunderland, whether it be changes on the training ground or to the players diet.

Like his mentor Rinus Michels, Advocaat prefers a 4-3-3 and attacking formation, but he is a thinking coach, who will try and adapt his team to each opponent. The English press will also have fun with Advocaat, who is known for his outspoken views, recently telling Manchester United boss Louis van Gaal to stop moaning in an interview in Netherlands.

Can Advocaat save Sunderland?

A relegation scrap is something Advocaat has rarely had to deal with in his career, and with only nine games to go it could be difficult for Advocaat to get Sunderland playing exactly the way he wants.

However Advocaat will get his side very organised, and if he can install confidence and an attacking intent, something that has been missing from the club, then Sunderland have every chance of survival. Advocaat has admitted that coaching in the Premier League is a dream of his, and he has nine games to prove he can be the man to take on the position permanently next season.

admin (13844 Posts)

Follow @Footballoranje_ on Twitter