Ronald Koeman

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Koeman names 5 newcomers in his first Netherlands squad

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THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) New coach Ronald Koeman has named five uncapped players in the Netherlands squad for his first international in charge, signaling that he is going to shake up a team that failed to qualify for two consecutive major tournaments.

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The newcomers named Friday in Koeman’s 25-man squad include 18-year-old Ajax winger Justin Kluivert, the son of former Netherlands striker Patrick Kluivert.

Koeman’s other new names were AZ Alkmaar players Marco Bizot, Guus Til and Wout Weghorst and Hans Hateboer of Atalanta.

The Netherlands takes on England on March 23 in Amsterdam and Portugal three days later in Geneva.

With the Dutch having failed to qualify for this year’s World Cup in Russia, Koeman has time to experiment as he seeks his strongest team.

Ronald Koeman named new Netherlands boss

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It didn’t take Ronald Koeman too long to land another job.

The former Everton and Southampton manager was named the new head coach of the Dutch national team on Tuesday, with Koeman signing a contract through the end of the 2022 World Cup.

Holland have failed to reach the last two major tournaments (EURO 2016 and the 2018 World Cup) and have had three managers in charge since 2014 when Louis Van Gaal led them to a third-place finish at the World Cup in Brazil, then left to manage Manchester United.

Guus Hiddink, Danny Blind and Dick Advocaat all failed to reignite a national team which finished excelled at both the 2010 and 2014 World Cups. Now it is Koeman’s turn to usher through a new era of young, talented Dutch players.

His first game in charge of the Netherlands will be a friendly against England in Amsterdam on March 23.

Koeman is joined by Nico-Jan Hoogma who will become the sporting director in a statement released by the Dutch Football Association (KNVB) on Tuesday.

The KNVB has reached agreement with Ronald Koeman (54) about the appointment as national coach of the Dutch national team. Koeman has just signed a contract that connects him to Orange with immediate effect up to and including the World Cup 2022.

Nico-Jan Hoogma has also entered into a contract with the football association. Thanks to the cooperation of Heracles Almelo, where 49-year-old Hoogma has been working as general manager since 1 January 2007, he will be working as a director of top football in Zeist on 1 March. His contact runs until 1 July 2022.

A legend of the Dutch national team, Koeman always dreamed of being their manager as well as managing Barcelona in the future. It is likely he will have to at least lead the Netherlands to the latter stages of the 2022 World Cup for this to be deemed a success and keep his dreams of managing Barcelona alive.

His 18-month spell at Everton ended in October 2017 with the Toffees battling against relegation after he had led them to seventh place in the Premier League in the 2016-17 season. In the two seasons prior to that he led Southampton to 7th and 6th place finishes respectively, which were their highest-ever finishes in the PL.

A former player for Groningen, Ajax, PSV Eindhoven and Feyenoord in his homeland, plus Barcelona abroad where he scored the winning goal in the 1991 European Cup final, Koeman scored 14 goals in 78 appearances for the Dutch national team and helped them win their only major title to date, the 1988 European Championships.

Koeman has also managed Vitesse Arnhem, Ajax, Benfice, PSV, Valencia, AZ Alkmaar and Feyenoord with varying degrees of success.

Report: Ronald Koeman set for Netherlands manager job

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There could be a pair of former Everton bosses matching much-analyzed wits if Belgium’s soon drawn with the Netherlands.

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That’s because Roberto Martinez is at the helm of the Red Devils, while Sky Sports is reporting that the Dutch will appoint Ronald Koeman their new boss on Monday.

The Netherlands failed to qualify for the 2018 World Cup, and Koeman was fired by Everton earlier this season.

He has plenty of experience with and knowledge of the young Dutch players, having managed in the Eredivisie from 2009-14. Tonny Vilhena developed under Koeman at Feyenoord, and the manager brought Davy Klaassen to Everton last summer.

USMNT veteran Earnie Stewart was among the names rumored for the job.

The 2 Robbies: Spurs thrash Everton on Kane’s historic day and more

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Robbie Mustoe and Robbie Earle break down Tottenham’s 4-0 win over Everton thanks to a Harry Kane brace (0:45), Chelsea’s scoreless draw with Leicester (12:30) and run through some crucial results at the bottom half of the table (19:20). Plus, a preview of Liverpool-Man City (26:15) and the latest on Alexis Sanchez’s future with or without Arsenal (33:00).

Join Earle & Mustoe on The 2 Robbies Football Show, Saturdays at 5pm ET. Listen on the NBCSports Radio App and call 855-323-4622 in the U.S. for lively passionate debate.

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Ronald Koeman lifts lid on Giroud deal, Everton problems

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Ronald Koeman has been talking about his 16-month spell in charge of Everton and where it all went wrong.

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And the failure to sign Olivier Giroud over the summer is clearly his biggest, and most damaging, slip-up as Everton boss.

Speaking to Dutch magazine Voetbal International, Koeman revealed how close he came to getting the final piece of the jigsaw.

“I had Olivier Giroud in the building,” Koeman said. “That was hard to swallow. That would have been perfect but at the very last minute he decided he’d rather live in London. You tell me where you can get a better striker.”

I understand that Giroud’s hold-up play would have been ideal for Everton, but was there really no Plan B for Koeman and Everton’s Director of Football Steve Walsh in the transfer market? Chris Wood? Fernando Llorente? Islam Slimani?

Hardly household names but all three players were available in the summer and would’ve done a similar job to Giroud to replace the Romelu Lukaku-sized hole in their attack.

Koeman also, predictability, pointed to the summer sale of Lukaku as the main reason for Everton’s struggles and defended spending a club record $55 million on Gylfi Sigurdsson as well as spending big on numerous other No.10s in Wayne Rooney, Nicola Vlasic and Davy Klaassen.

“Lukaku was important to us, not only because of his goals, but because of his way of playing – strong, quick, direct,” Koeman said. “There was always the option of the long ball to him. Now we missed such a player, we had Nicola Vlasic and Wayne Rooney, players who want the ball in to feet.”

“We sold Lukaku for £90m. Our most expensive purchase, the Icelander Gylfi Sigurdsson, cost half. It’s a lot of money, but in England you work in a world of different numbers. Players here all cost a lot more than they are actually worth. That’s how the market works.”

Again, Koeman’s defense of Everton’s summer of spending seems like he is making excuses for failing to find a striker.

Yes, Everton had been handed a tough schedule to start the season but it was the manner of the performances rather than the defeats which were most concerning for the fans and the board.

“I was on holiday when I received the Premier League fixture list by e-mail,” Koeman said. “I looked at it and saw that five of our first nine games would be against clubs from last season’s top six: Chelsea, Tottenham, Man City, Man United and Arsenal. I looked at it again and I said to myself, ‘Phew! That is not going to be an easy run, in particular with a Europa League run at the same time’. And, most of all, because I had lost my striker Lukaku.”

All in all, when we look back at his time in charge of the Toffees we will think about how different it would’ve been had one man decided to swap London for Merseyside.

Giroud will not be on Koeman’s Christmas card list for quite some time…