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 Posted by ESPN Staff
Apr 9, 2006

Hiddink 'insulted' over England approach

The prospect of Guus Hiddink featuring on the short-list of candidates to become England's new manager disappeared today when it emerged the Dutchman felt insulted by the manner of an approach by the Football Association.

Hiddink's agent Cees van Nieuwenhuizen confirmed he received inquiries from the FA over the availability of the PSV Eindhoven coach with a view to including him among the leading contenders.

But Van Nieuwenhuizen revealed the 59-year-old felt his track record meant there should have been no rivals for the appointment.

'There was some contact with me but the way that was done was not so serious,' Van Nieuwenhuizen told BBC Radio Five Live's Sportsweek programme.

'They were interested in having a coffee or tea to find out if Guus could be a candidate on their short-list. But we told them we would not be interested.

'If people are finding out if he might be a candidate to go on the shortlist, then I guess that their homework has not been done very well.

'You'd expect that when you're in the world of football you'd know who Guus Hiddink is, what he has achieved at club and international level, if it's in the Champions League, national league or in the World Cup.

'I think either you go for Guus or you don't go for him. To find out he might be a candidate for the shortlist is sort of an insult to Guus Hiddink and his achievements so far.

'As far as his professional background is concerned, I don't think he has to be humble towards members of whatever federation.'

The FA have whittled their shortlist down to four names with Martin O'Neill, Sam Allardyce, Alan Curbishley and Steve McClaren competing to succeed Sven-Goran Eriksson after the World Cup.

Hiddink, who will leave PSV at the end of the season, was among the early favourites for the job but the desire to appoint a British coach has worked against him.

He will lead Australia to the World Cup in Germany but his destination after that remains a secret with reports linking him with moves to Real Madrid and the Russian national team.

Although Hiddink's next position remains under wraps, Van Nieuwenhuizen left little doubt Soho Square will not be his future destination.

'Guus is totally out of the reckoning and that doesn't disappoint him at all,' said Hiddink's agent.

'We were approached by media people initially, saying how he's on the shortlist and we say that of course he would be flattered because the England job is not like becoming the coach of Timbuktu.

'But nothing happened and he's got so many other options that could be considered. He won't be the England manager.'

FA director of communications Adrian Bevington said: 'The FA will not be drawn on comments concerning candidates who may or may not be connected with the England manager's position.'