The achievement of the 62-year-old coach in taking the Netherlands to third place at the tournament highlighted the meticulous nature of his preparations and a single-minded self-belief.
               
The close rapport with his players will also excite the legions of United followers worldwide, who are hoping their club will bounce back after a dismal season under David Moyes.
               
Van Gaal bucked convention and ran a gauntlet of heavy criticism when he changed tactics and ditched the traditional Dutch attacking style on the eve of the World Cup.
               
In a country obsessed with playing possession football, the decision to adapt a defensive approach with emphasis on swift counter attacks was tantamount to blasphemy but Van Gaal was eventually proved right - after getting his senior players to buy into his belief.
               
"He had everyone believing in the tactical changes and the fact it would work for us," said Dutch midfielder Wesley Sneijder on the team's return home this week.

"Our success in the tournament was a lot about the coach,” he added.
               
There were few detractors by the end of the World Cup as the Dutch battled their way to the semi-finals, eliminated by Argentina only on post-match penalties.
               
Along the way Van Gaal made several astute changes to influence the outcome of matches, drawing widespread praise for innovative thinking.
               
The use of forward Dirk Kuyt as an emergency right back was an example of a calculated gamble that the Dutch practised in training first before Van Gaal felt it could work in matches.
     
Belief in youth
               
He was also not scared to throw young players - like Memphis Depay and Jordy Clasie - into key World Cup games, highlighting his belief in youth.
               
In Brazil, Van Gaal made few references to his new job - he signed a three year contract with United in May - but looked genuinely enthusiastic when he eventually spoke about his next assignment after Saturday's 3-0 win over Brazil in the third place play-off.
               
"It is an exciting challenge," he told Dutch television.
               
It is a return to club football for the first time since Bayern Munich sacked him in 2011.
               
Van Gaal has shown little of his hand yet with the pre-season signings of Ander Herrera from Athletic Bilbao and Luke Shaw from Southampton.
               
At Barcelona more than decade ago he was heavily criticised for creating a colony of Dutch players but one of them says that is unlikely to happen at Old Trafford.
               
"There were seven players dominating the changing room, speaking Dutch and not moving out of our own bubble. It was a very unhealthy situation and I think Louis realised that. He won't do it again," Ronald de Boer, now an analyst on NOS television, predicted.   

Former captain Robson believes Van Gaal can renew United challenge

Van Gaal can propel Manchester United back into Premier League contention after their dismal form of last season and excite the players again, former United skipper Bryan Robson said on Tuesday.
               
Robson, speaking a day before the Netherlands' World Cup coach Van Gaal arrives in Manchester to take up his new post, also said that the lack of European football at Old Trafford could help the team back to the top.
               
"You could see Holland were very well organised in the World Cup and there was discipline. Hopefully, he can bring that to Manchester. I think he will," Robson said.
               
"They can bounce back straight away. His CV is great. He's got great experience with top clubs and top players,” he added.
               
United finished a lowly seventh in the Premier League last season - 22 points behind champions Manchester City - under former Everton boss David Moyes who replaced long-standing manager Alex Ferguson.
               
"A lot of the players let themselves down (last season) and didn't perform the way they had under Sir Alex," said Robson, who spent 13 years at United and earned the nickname "Captain Marvel" for his driving performances in midfield.
               
"They will be up for the challenge and will be excited by the new coach,” he added.
               
The lack of European football, while disappointing, could also be beneficial to United, who failed to qualify for either this season's Champions League or Europa League, he said.
               
"The players get a bit more rest and you don't get as many injuries," he said.

"That can also be a real advantage,” he added.

(Agencies)

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