Football

Van Gaal fumes over tactics probe

Holland coach Louis van Gaal took journalists to task this morning (Singapore time) as he bristled at suggestions he wasn't playing attacking football at the World Cup.

After his team beat Chile 2-0 to top Group B with three wins out of three, van Gaal (above) fired back questions at the press conference when asked about his counter-attacking set-up.

"Could you give me a definition of attacking football? That's my question to you," van Gaal questioned one journalist.

"I'm asking you, if you have such a clever question... If you're going to ask me questions, I'm going to ask you questions."

Opposing coach Jorge Sampaoli had also criticised the Dutch tactics, saying: "They ended up winning, but in my opinion it was unfair because I think Chile made a huge effort to attack.

"We wanted to play and Holland didn't."

Dutch midfielder Wesley Sneijder snapped back at Sampaoli.

He said: "It's a little bit disrespectful to say that we didn't do anything today because we were the ones who won 2-0."

Van Gaal refused to comment, but did say that his strategies were simply designed to win.

In a cagey game of little attacking endeavour, the Dutch struck twice late on through Leroy Fer and Memphis Depay.

"It's all about winning, so I use the system I think will let me win... that's what I think football is," van Gaal said.

"You have to evaluate a strategy that will help you win, and this is the proof in the pudding. We're not giving away games and we're winning."

Van Gaal added that he had used a similar 5-3-2 system to win the 2009 Dutch championship with AZ Alkmaar. At this World Cup, Holland have beaten Spain 5-1 and Australia 3-2.

"This has nothing to do with the fact that you play more offensive or less offensive," van Gaal said.

"It simply has to do with the fact that my team, my group and staff always want to score one more goal than the other team." - Wire Services.

World Cup