Ronald Koeman is to return as Netherlands coach when Louis van Gaal leaves the role after the World Cup in Qatar, Dutch daily De Telegraaf reported. Van Gaal, who has long made it clear he will leave after the global soccer showpiece later this year, said last week he was receiving treatment for an aggressive form of prostate cancer.
Koeman had a successful two-and-a-half-year spell as national team coach before leaving to join Barcelona in 2020 and while the Royal Dutch Football Association have yet to make an announcement Van Gaal gave him his backing. "They consulted me, I have a say in that," Van Gaal told De Telegraaf. "It's not that difficult.
A year ago, I was the only coach available who had experience, that now applies to Koeman. He would be a good successor."
Koeman helped the Netherlands reach the Euro 2020 finals after they had missed the previous tournament and the 2018 World Cup, and also to the final of the Nations League, where they lost 1-0 to Portugal.
He left for what he described as his "dream job" at Barcelona in August 2020, having spent a hugely successful six years at the Camp Nou as a player.
He was sacked by the Catalan side in October last year.