Southampton boss Ronald Koeman believes Manchester United counterpart Louis van Gaal has a style of management which ‘puts fear’ into his players.
Koeman, who spent two years as Van Gaal’s assistant at Barcelona between 1998 and 2000, insists their styles are in complete contrast to each other, and that his former mentor’s ego leads to clashes with his players.
Koeman, whose Saints side beat United at Old Trafford last month, also revealed the Netherlands Football Association had to employ a “softer” manager in Guus Hiddink to succeed Van Gaal following last year’s World Cup.
Speaking to Dutch television, Koeman said: “When you bring in Van Gaal you bring in quality but you also bring in someone who thinks he knows everything and that will cause clashes.
“When you have Van Gaal in charge, it is a fact that there is fear in his team and that is not always good.
“I was his assistant at Barcelona after the World Cup in 1998 and I learned a lot of things from him, but there is a big difference between him and me as managers.
“The way he handles his players is totally different. I don’t put as much pressure on the shoulders of my players.
“After Van Gaal coached the Dutch national team at the World Cup, the Dutch federation had to bring in a manager who would bring in a softer touch. The players needed an arm around their shoulder, someone calmer.”