“That is a stupid question.”
Louis van Gaal hasn’t held his first press conference as Manchester United manager just yet but already the British press have felt the full force of Van Gaal’s death stare.
Notorious for being a no nonsense speaker who is not afraid to speak his mind, Van Gaal’s media presence is the polar opposite of David Moyes’ and there will be plenty journalists in Britain joining Sky Sports’ Gary Cotterill and BBC’s Dan Roan in quivering a little at the thought of questioning Van Gaal.
Luckily, the nice guys over at NRC.nl have compiled a fantastic list of ten rules that journalists should abide by to avoid embarrassment at the hands of Van Gaal.
It may be satirical but one thing is abundantly clear – Van Gaal will control the media, it won’t be the other way around.
Van Gaal really sounds like a force of nature and we’re all counting down the days our first game next season to get to see him in action.
Here are some of the best bits from the list:
5. It’s his language now, not yours Mr. Van Gaal will come up with new additions to the Oxford Dictionary. In Germany, he inadvertently (or was it?) introduced the phrase Der Tod oder die Gladiolen, a Dutch saying meaning literally “death or the gladioli”: all or nothing. This is because if Mr. Van Gaal speaks your language, it is no longer your language, it’s his. It is not Mr. Van Gaal who has trouble speaking English, it is you, for not going along with his obviously much better interpretation of it.
3. Don’t introduce yourself Or else he’ll know your name, remember it and use it against you. You will not be some anonymous guy with a microphone and a cameraman on his side; you will be Gary, or Clive, or Tony, with whom he will or will not have a feud from the get-go. (He will.)
1. Be prepared for any possible mood Contrary to many other managers, whether the match is won, drawn or lost is no indication whatsoever of Van Gaal’s mood. Even if he has won and seems to be quite happy, one wrong question can – and will – put him off.