By Opeyemi Oladunjoye
Louis van Gaal has revealed that he would like his Netherlands team to become the first to finish a FIFA World Cup undefeated.
The 62-year-old coach believes this is a worthy cause to fight for in his last match in charge of his country’s team before assuming charge of Manchester United and he is desperate to achieve that against Brazil in the play-off for third place. “It was very, very sad and a dream has been broken,” Van Gaal said. “It’s not going to come back because it was all about being number one. But there is still something for us to do. We can still write history because the Netherlands lost matches in 1974, 1978 and 2010. “Slowly but surely we are realising that we have to go for it.
A Dutch team has never returned home unbeaten and that is now our aim. It’s going to be part of my speech that it will be my last match and I hope the players want to give me a present in the form of a victory, so that we remain undefeated.” “I hope I can prepare them to play a good match. It’s quite something to go seven matches unbeaten [in a World Cup].”
The squad’s oldest member, 33-year-old Dirk Kuyt, will quit international football after the tournament. The striker-turned-midfielder-turned-full-back, fifth on Netherlands’ most-capped players list, is as well eager to erase the sorrow suffered in Brazil’s biggest city with satisfaction in its capital. “In football there is always a next match,” Kuyt said. “We want to win here, return unbeaten and with a feeling that we have given everything here. We want to leave this tournament with a good feeling. We still won’t be satisfied but this is the way we have to look at things as top athletes. Third place will feel a lot better than fourth place.”