#ReadersResponse: Football fans from Oman and overseas have welcomed Erwin Koeman as the new coach of the country’s national football team, after he signed a two-year deal with the Oman Football Association recently. Koeman was previously caretaker manager of Turkish club Fenerbahce SK, after taking over as caretaker manager from fellow Dutchman Philip Cocu, and Turkish fan Tolgahan Umur said, “I respect the management decision, gave full support to Cocu and also gave the same support to Erwin Koeman.”
Dutchman Harry Pater added, “He is a coach who wants to rejuvenate things. Erwin Koeman could for example, earn something with youth again, and then he will be closer to success in three or four years. This is the Arsenal concept,” as fellow Netherlands national Gerrie Bijl said, “He has to become the successor of Pim Verbeek, who resigned as a national coach of Oman in early February.”
Koeman will take over from another Dutchman, Pim Verbeek, who resigned as Oman manager earlier this month. During his time, he led Oman to success at the 2017 Arab Gulf Cup of Nations, when they beat regional rivals United Arab Emirates 6-5 on penalties, and guided Oman to their first ever knockout game at the Asian Cup, where they lost 2-0 to Iran in the Round of 16.
Omani fan Hamid Al Harrasi said, “I hope he is able to improve on the work of Pim, because he did a good job for the national team. There is a lot of hope now for the Oman football team, because he was bringing in a lot of young players who were working hard for the country, and using the old players to help them. I wish Erwin Koeman all the best.”
Obaid Al Ruzaiqi added, “Dutch football has a good reputation in the world, and Erwin Koeman is not just a good coach, he will be a good teacher. You look at the famous players from Holland who are now coaches: Frank Rijkaard, Marco van Basten, Ruud Gullit, of course, Erwin’s brother Ronald is now coaching the Dutch national team, so it is a very good move for Oman football.”
The Oman Football Association had approved the appointment of Erwin Koeman as the new coach of Oman’s football team for two seasons. The Board of the Oman Football Association held a meeting headed by the president of the association, Salim Said Al Wahaibi with the presence of all members.
The CEO of the Oman Football Association, Said Othman Al Balushi said, “The board evaluated Oman’s performance at the Asian Football Cup in the UAE, and coach Erwin Koeman was approved as the coach of Oman’s football team for two seasons starting from March 10, 2019 to March 9, 2021.”
Saeed Al Bulushi, the General Secretary of the Oman Football Association, added, “Erwin Koeman arrived in Muscat on Monday night, and on Tuesday afternoon, we had a board meeting to discuss this. Once that was done, Erwin met the Chairman of the Oman Football Association, so that we could negotiate his role with the national team.
He added, “Erwin was the only candidate we were looking at to fill the role, and we were going to enter negotiations with only him. We were confident that he will agree to sign with us, and we were sure that the negotiations would go well.”
57-year-old Koeman is the elder brother of Ronald Koeman, and served as his assistant while he was formerly manager of English Premier League side Southampton FC. A former midfielder, Koeman played for a number of famed Dutch sides, including FC Groningen and PSV Eindhoven, in addition to a five-year spell in Belgium with KV Mechelen. He’s managed a number of club sides, including RKC Waalwijk, Feyenoord Rotterdam, Utrecht and FC Eindhoven in his native Netherlands. He was also manager of the Hungary national football team for two years. In addition to his two-year stint as assistant manager of Southampton and his time in Istanbul, Koeman also worked as Everton’s assistant manager for a year, alongside his brother Ronald.