Louis van Gaal slams former club Barcelona for blaming Koeman, de Jong, Depay for poor form

Netherlands head coach Louis van Gaal defended compatriot Koeman, de Jong and Depay, as Barcelona are struggling at ninth spot in La Liga table.

Memphis Depay of FC Barcelona during the La Liga match against Getafe
Memphis Depay of FC Barcelona during the La Liga match against Getafe - IMAGO / Action Plus

Netherlands head coach Louis van Gaal has criticised Barcelona for ‘blaming foreigners’ for the crisis they are currently facing on and off the pitch. 

The Catalan side, who are managed by former Holland boss Ronald Koeman, have endured a tough start to the season and are currently ninth in the La Liga table. They also lost their opening two Champions League games by an aggregate scoreline of 6-0 and are looking a shadow of their former selves.

Away from the pitch, they are facing a financial crisis and could not hold on to some of their star players because of the poor financial management of the previous administration.

As a result, there is pressure mounting on boss Koeman, while fellow Dutchmen Frenkie de Jong and Memphis Depay have also come under fire for their displays.

But Van Gaal, who managed Barca for four years, insists that Barcelona are picking the wrong set of people for criticism.

When asked about the scrutiny his countrymen are facing, the Holland boss said ‘it is typical of Barca to blame foreigners’, according to Goal.

“Frenkie de Jong, criticised? It’s typical Barcelona,” he said.

“When you have the great contributions he’s had in the past two years, there’s not too much to worry about.

“[But] when things go bad, people in Barcelona always look for the foreigners [to blame].”

Van Gaal managed Barcelona from 1997 to 2000 and 2002 to 2003 but has often not spoken highly of the club, especially in their treatment of non-Spanish players. 

Speaking about Depay, who moved from Lyon to the Nou Camp on a free transfer in the summer, the 70-year-old insisted that the striker’s work rate was ‘commendable’.

“When I look at the data from Memphis, I’ve never had a striker like this,” he added.

“Someone who runs so much, goes deep so many times and gets into the ball so much. That’s commendable.”