LONDON - Current Netherlands national team coach Louis van Gaal could be appointed as the new manager of Manchester United as early as Thursday, according to widespread reports in the British media.
Van Gaal, 62, quickly emerged as the favourite to become United's next manager after David Moyes was sacked last month and is reported to have held a meeting with player-coach Ryan Giggs in Holland on Wednesday.
Giggs, who was appointed interim manager following Moyes's dismissal, was pictured in Van Gaal's hometown of Noordwijk and is thought to have been offered the chance to work as the Dutchman's assistant.
Van Gaal would not comment when approached by a reporter from British television station Sky Sports News as he left a book launch in Amsterdam on Wednesday.
Van Gaal, who has also previously coached Ajax, Barcelona, AZ Alkmaar and Bayern Munich, is currently preparing the Netherlands squad for next month's World Cup in Brazil.
His commitments mean that he would not be able to join up with United until after the tournament, which would not be until mid-July if the team reached the latter stages.
If appointed, he will become the first manager from outside the British Isles to take charge of United.
Former Everton manager Moyes endured a disastrous campaign after succeeding Alex Ferguson last year and was sacked in April.
United went on to finish seventh in the Premier League and failed to qualify for Europe for the first time since 1989.