With the Netherlands 2014 World Cup campaign over, Louis Van Gaal steps down as head of the Netherlands Elftal, and Guus Hiddink takes back the reins.

  • By Spencer Steevenz
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van gbyThe Dutch came back from Brazil with a bronze medal after beating Brazil in the third place play off, but came painfully close to reaching the final. Only penalty kick’s prevented Louis van Gaal’s side from meeting Germany in the final instead of Argentina.

We all knew Louis Van Gaal would be stepping down from his spot immediately following this tournament, and all those who bleed orange owe him a huge thanks. He took a team known for infighting, and united them. He took a team that many experts predicted would go home before the knockout round, and brought them within 5 penalty kicks of the final game. His tactical genius pushed Holland through near exits against both Mexico and Costa Rica, and got everyone talking about Oranje, he kept the tournament interesting. After failing to qualify for the World Cup 2002 in his first stint, he more than redeemed himself in his second spell in charge.

Oranje’s next gaffer, Guus Hiddink, will start his second spell in charge, having led the Dutch to the semi-final in 1998, where Holland lost in the semi-final. To Penalty kicks. 4-2. While Hiddink will not be staying in charge until Russia 2018, he will see many of the young talent that first shined in Brazil move into the starting eleven in the Euros two summers from now.

While maybe somewhat more modest in demeanor than Van Gaal, Hiddink is a brilliant tactician in his own rite. He’s coached Real Madrid, Chelsea, PSV; and, knocked Holland out of the Euro Cup finals in 2008 while leading Russia to a semi-final.

While our hearts remain heavy, there’s no doubt the future of Dutch football is as bright as it is orange.

Thanks to the 23-man squad that gave us thrilling football. Thanks to Louis Van Gaal. And, a very warm welcome to Guus Hiddink.

Spencer Steevensz (104 Posts)

I'm a digital/social marketer out of Chicago. I grew up loving Dutch football - total football is the only way to play. I support PSV in the Eredivisie, and whatever team has the most Dutch guys on it in any other league. Hup Holland Hup!