So Guus Hiddink has resigned as the Netherlands coach and it should come as little shock to anyone. The former Real Madrid and Chelsea manager endured a torrid time in charge of his home nation since taking the job in July 2014.
In his first match back in the hot seat he saw his side lose 2-0 to Italy in a friendly, but it is the Netherlands devastatingly poor form in the Euro 2016 qualifiers which would ultimately force Hiddink’s hand.
Losing matches to the Czech Republic and Iceland and a draw against Turkey has left the Dutch in third place in their group.
From 10 games in charge of the Netherlands, Hiddink has lost five and had just a 40% win rate; his lowest since coaching South Korea 13 years ago.
Despite a poor win rate with South Korea, that is the coaching job he will always be fondly remembered for after guiding the Koreans to a shock four place finish at the 2002 World Cup.
At 68, one wonders what the future holds for Hiddink, who has had an incredible career in management. Kicking off in spectacular style with PSV Eindhoven, he had only been there for a year when he guided them to the European Cup in 1988. Since then he has coached eight different clubs and five different nations.
It is noticeable, however, that Hiddink’s trophy cabinet had dried up some time ago. He hasn’t won any silverware since Chelsea’s 2009 FA Cup win. Outside of his home country he has only won two trophies – the aforementioned cup win with Chelsea and the Intercontinental Cup with Real Madrid as far back as 1998.
There’s no doubt, though, that if Hiddink does retire he will still be missed from soccer. His decision to leave the Dutch ahead of the Euro’s and with still another year to go should be applauded. Simply put, it wasn’t working this time around. Assistant coach Danny Blind is expected to assume the role.
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