With the World Cup drawing to a close and Louis van Gaal’s set to arrive at Manchester United just next week, it is time the fans got to know the men that will accompany the new manager and make up the backroom staff at Old Trafford next season.
One of those men is Marcel Bout. Brought in to work alongside Ryan Giggs and Frans Hoek in support of Louis van Gaal, the 51-year-old Dutchman began his coaching career in 1995 when he joined Feyenoord in Holland, working with the Rotterdam club until 2004.
He first worked with Louis van Gaal in 2006, when he was appointed youth team coach at AZ Alkmaar. Van Gaal had already been in charge of the first team at Alkmaar for a year, and as part of a successful backroom staff, van Gaal and Bout celebrated winning the Eredivisie title in 2008/09, finishing ahead of FC Twente and Ajax.
Bout and van Gaal went their separate ways following that title success, with van Gaal joining European heavyweights Bayern Munich and Bout becoming Head Coach at Telstar. However it wasn’t long before they were reunited, with Marcel Bout joining his old boss in Bavaria a year later, at the start of the 2010/2011 season. Van Gaal had just won a historic league and cup double with the German side, as well as finishing runners-up in that season’s Champions League, losing to Jose Mourinho’s Inter Milan. Bout was able to add the German equivalent of the Community Shield to his growing medal collection before van Gaal’s departure in the summer of 2011.
Once again, the pair were not apart for long. Van Gaal was out of work for a year before accepting the job in charge of the Netherlands national team, and Marcel Bout was again to be involved with van Gaal, working as an assistant coach, technical analyst and scout with the Under 21’s. With the number of young players in van Gaal’s squad in Brazil, it is clear to see Bout has been successful in charge of that youth side. Beyond that, van Gaal must also trust his judgement, given that so many young players with so little international or even European experience have been given the chance to shine at a World Cup. When this summer’s tournament in Brazil is concluded, Bout will work as an assistant to Louis van Gaal at Old Trafford, specialising in opposition scouting.
|1995-2004||Feyenoord||Assistant, Youth & Recovery coach|
|2004-2006||Volendam||Assistant & Youth coach, Scout|
|2006-2009||AZ Alkmaar||Youth Team Manager|
|2010-2012||Bayern Munich||Assistant manager, analyst, scout|
|2012-2014||Netherlands U-21||Assistant coach, analyst, scout|
|2014-||Manchester United||Assistant coach, opposition scout|
Given their history together, it is clear that van Gaal trusts Marcel Bout and values his vast coaching experience. Just like the new manager, Bout will arrive with a well-respected reputation having achieved success with various clubs all over Europe. His vast scouting knowledge could have a profound effect on the first team at Manchester United next season for multiple reasons. As well as continuing to produce scouting reports to a level that has brought him success throughout his career, but his extensive knowledge of a variety of footballing cultures and coaching techniques will further the education of the United squad following the arrival of Louis van Gaal.
Marcel Bout has accompanied Louis van Gaal all over Europe. Most importantly they have tasted success multiple times all over Europe, and may well achieve the ultimate glory in Brazil this summer. Whether Holland become world champions or not is almost irrelevant, van Gaal and Bout have a working relationship that has produced fantastic results. Soon they will inherit a new squad, an underachieving squad, and I wouldn’t be surprised if they added more medals to their impressive collections by the time we roll around to next May. An important aspect of Bout’s career which is important for his future role at Manchester United is his heavy involvement with youth team players during the time he has spent with different clubs across Europe. He has worked closely with the youth setup at Feyenoord, Volendam and AZ Alkmaar, as well as in his current role in the Holland set-up. With Manchester United’s history for promoting youth players and trusting in their ability, appointing a coach with a history of working with youth teams will only further that tradition.