Koeman speaks on appointment as Netherlands coach

Ronald Koeman follows in footsteps of Louis van Gaal with new job

Ronald Koeman took charge of the struggling Netherlands team on Tuesday, saying he wants to restore players' pride in representing the three-time World Cup runner-up.

The Dutch have been without a coach since Dick Advocaat stepped down in November after they failed to qualify for this year's finals.

The 54-year-old is Netherlands' fourth head coach since Louis van Gaal left to take over at Manchester United after leading Oranje to third place at the 2014 World Cup.

Koeman, who won 78 caps and scored 14 goals as a player between 1982-94, has previous experience coaching the Netherlands, having served as Hiddink's assistant with the Dutch national team at the 1998 World Cup. "If I wasn't, I wouldn't have taken this job". But the former defender said he is prepared to switch up the way his team plays to get results.

Koeman, who earned 78 caps for the Netherlands, succeeds Dick Advocaat, who had been brought in midway through previous year after the sacking of Danny Blind in March.

A statement from the Dutch FA (the KNVB) said: "The KNVB has reached agreement with Ronald Koeman about the appointment as national coach of the Dutch national team".

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"We need a system to get the best out of our players and to get an advantage over our opponents".

"If you know how I work with my teams, I am a coach who likes to change systems".

Koeman had guided Everton to seventh in his first season in charge.

Koeman was previously Southampton manager and led the club to a sixth-placed finish in the EPL in his second season before leaving for Everton.

"I see a lot of talent", he said. Koeman takes over a Netherlands team that is nearing the end of an era with winger Arjen Robben having retired past year, playmaker Wesley Sneijder approaching the end of his career, and all-time top scorer Robin van Persie now a substitute at Feyenoord.

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