Andries Noppert has spoken highly of outgoing-head coach Louis van Gaal who handed him the number one spot for the Netherlands during the 2022 FIFA World Cup campaign in Qatar, NU reports.
The SC Heerenveen goalkeeper made his international debut in the winter tournament and his performances are believed to have impressed Ajax who are rumoured to be looking to sign Noppert in January.
But despite his recent success, Noppert has played down what the future might be to the point he might not even be in Ronald Koeman’s plans when he takes over Oranje next month.
“I am grateful to people that I was able to experience this,” Noppert said after the elimination. “That I got the trust from the coach and from the whole country. I am happy with that piece of confidence. I want to thank everyone for the support.”
Noppert, a former goalkeeper for Go Ahead Eagles, NAC Breda and Italian-side Foggia is especially proud of the particular course of his career. “If you see my past, I am living proof that you have to keep believing in yourself. I am also lucky that Van Gaal was the national coach.”
Noppert is hugely disappointed that the Netherlands are still out of the tournament after a comeback. Argentina seemed to win 2-0, but two late goals from Wout Weghorst allowed the Netherlands to still hope for the semi-finals.
“On the other hand, you can also be proud that you still come back in the match. Then you want to perform another miracle with the penalty series. Then it unfortunately falls out in a negative way for us.”
“I think we can go on for hours about the penalties, but it’s just a lottery. That’s the first thing that comes to mind. A Messi like that, with all due respect, he waits so long. Then you’re standing with both feet on the ground and then he shoots the ball into the other corner. That’s just quality.”
Despite the elimination in the quarter-finals, Noppert believes the Dutch can be proud of the performance in Qatar. “I have only respect for these guys,” said the goalkeeper.