The untold facts and childhood stories of Netherlands manager Louis van Gaal have been revealed.
Van Gaal's full name is Aloysius Paulus Maria 'Louis' van Gaal. Born in 1951, he was the youngest of a huge family and has nine brothers and sisters.
When he was a child, Van Gaal didn’t have the best of relationships with his ill father and often rebelled against his strict Catholic upbringing.
As he was the baby of the family, it was suggested that his self-assured nature was a result of being spoiled by his siblings and parents.
But Van Gaal, 71, himself believed that his childhood taught him the discipline central to his coaching ethics.
Lifeblogger have dug deep into the archive to reveal some fascinating stories and facts about the former Manchester United and Bayern Munich manager.
Van Gaal was brought up in a very ordered household, where every member of the family knew their chores. Louis was given the tasks of looking after his parents' shop and peeling enough potatoes for family meals.
When he started playing football, Van Gaal was not a person for joking around, as life to him was too serious. The only thing he ever wanted to do was to win, at all costs.
It was revealed that the Netherlands boss gets so angry when losing a match that even his best friends are scared of him.
“Focused arrogance is the key to my success. My father had the same character as I have,” Van Gaal once said.
“He had an open mind. He listened and had the courage to make decisions that were difficult to accept for some. He was a leading figure.”
Van Gaal Sr died when Louis was just 11 years old.
After his father’s death, Van Gaal’s mother played an important part in his life, he would later reveal that he inherited his core values of honesty, respect, discipline and responsibility from his mother.
Van Gaal met his first wife, Fernanda Obbes, when he was 18. They married each other three years later and later had two daughters together, Brenda and Renate.
However, as Van Gaal was starting to make a name for himself at Ajax, his wife was taken ill and was diagnosed with liver and pancreatic cancer.
Rival fans mocked Van Gaal and his wife with a banner that read: “Van Gaal, heeft een kankerwijf’, which would roughly translate as ‘Van Gaal has a cancer b***h’.
Fernanda lost her battle with cancer at the age of 39. After the loss of his first wife, Van Gaal lost faith in God.
He wrote in his autobiography: “When I lost Fernanda, it was then that I stopped believing in God and stopped being a Catholic.
“This God did not respect the human being and the suffering of my wife. I want nothing to do with a God who lets people suffer this much.”
Afterwards, Van Gaal offered to resign as Ajax manager but he was talked out of it by his daughters.
Van Gaal met his second wife, Truus, not long after the death of Fernanda and the pair then married in 2007.
Featured Image Credit: Alamy
- 'Go home!' - Louis van Gaal savagely hits back at reporter who called Netherlands 'boring' to watch at World Cup
- Louis van Gaal tells his wife to come to his hotel room to 'get laid'
- "I chased him" - Netherlands boss Louis van Gaal recalls trying to sign Liverpool legend as Man Utd manager
- Louis van Gaal hugs young journalist after being touched by his 'question' in press conference