Ronald Koeman: ”There was only one way at Southampton: the exit.”

Everton manager Ronald Koeman has indicated that he was in no hurry to leave Southampton after two seasons at the club. The club forced him to make a choice and the Dutchman was not expecting that. 

“It was not my first option to leave. I had one year left on my contract and the club did not want to go into the new season without knowing what would happen afterwards,” Koeman told Linda de Mol during her talk show Linda’s Zomerweek.

Southampton wanted to tie Koeman down to a longer deal but the Dutchman decided to join The Toffees.

“I had a meeting with the board but we could not reach an agreement,” he said. ”And at that moment, there was only one way and that was the exit.”
”And that was when Everton showed genuine interest in me. The club contacted me and approached me with their big project, with a big budget to sign new players.” 
”After several disappointing seasons, the club believes I am the ideal manager to take the club forward and take them into Europe.” 
Ronald Koeman talks about the club’s goals for the season.
“The goal is to finish the season in the top 6. Qualifying for the Champions League is also an ambition. There is a lot of pressure to perform but that’s the nature of our job.”
Koeman regrets moving to Estadi de Mestalla to join Valencia 9 years ago.
”Yes, I do have regrets. I think it was in October 2007 when I left PSV for Valencia,” Koeman told Linda de Mol.
”Back then I thought it was a stepping stone to finally realize my dream of becoming coach of Barcelona. It turned out to be one of the worst decisions. It was a fiasco. The club was run badly. It was very difficult; many coaches had been sacked. I also failed to succeed there. That hurts!”
”That was also annoying because we went to Spain with our youngest child who was 12 or 13 at the time,” he continued.

”The other children were somewhat older and we could not convince them to join us. He had to find a new school for the umpteenth time and make new friends mid-year. In Spain, he did not like the idea of going to school in suit and tie. He was not happy in Valencia.”

”I arrived there in October and got the sack in April. It is easy to talk about it now.”

”If I could go back in time, I wouldn’t have joined Valencia for my family.”

Ronald Koeman will welcome any move to sit down with Louis van Gaal to ”clear the air”.

Linda de Mol mentions how the holiday homes of Koeman and Van Gaal in Vale do Lobo are only a hundred meters apart and what an uncomfortable situation it creates. Linda de Mol also has a holiday home in Vale do Lobo.

It was a relationship that began on the best terms. The coaches saw each other socially but that’s no longer been the case for the last 14 years as their relationship has deteriorated. The coaches shook hands during their Premier League encounters.

”We have met at the Southampton – Manchester United games for the past 2 years. We shake hands and have a short conversation. But that is also very right and a good feeling,’’ Koeman said.

”I think it is a shame when you live so close to each other. Actually it is a one way street. He has to pass my house to get to his and we have to pass his house.’’

”No but yeah ok, I sometimes talk about it with Betina (Koeman’s wife) and tell her: Come on, let’s go and ring their doorbell and…,” 

With a bottle of wine?” asked Linda.

‘’Yes, in these times, why should one dwell on something that happened in 2002 or 2001,” Koeman said.

Linda asked if she would  ever see them on a golf cart together.
”Who knows!” answered Koeman

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