Netherlands coach Louis van Gaal believes that fans boycotting the 2022 World Cup in Qatar are “right”.
Earlier in the year, the former Manchester United manager said the decision to hold the tournament in the Middle Eastern country was “ridiculous” and claimed that FIFA’s stated objective to develop the sport was “bull****”.
“I think that you have to play in football countries that are more experienced with everything but also to stimulate that country in another way, the right way,” he said to the BBC. “This is also a small country. My family and friends have a lot of difficulty to find a place [to stay].”
Van Gaal also reacted to the protests from human rights organisations and to fans from the LGBTQ+ community who have said they will not attend the tournament.
“I think that they are right to do that because they believe in that, so they have to do that,” Van Gaal acknowledged. “I hope that at the end of the tournament, when we play the final, they shall see on television how good we are.”
The 71-year-old also said that playing the event in mid-season as opposed to the traditional summer slot has had a negative effect.
“This is not good,” he said.
“I think that this is not the best moment, but it is the moment we had to choose because of the climate.
“Always in the summers, we have more time to prepare.”