Football: Van Gaal wants to spend retirement in Portugal after his Man U tenure ends

LONDON (AFP) - Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal revealed on Thursday that he plans to retire when his reign at Old Trafford comes to an end.

He is under contract until 2017 and will walk away from the sport for good either when that deal expires or at the end of any extension.

The 63-year-old former Barcelona, Bayern Munich and Netherlands coach is keen to spend time with his wife Truus in their holiday home on the Algarve.

"I am old. This is my last job. For sure," he told the Daily Telegraph.

"I have to pay attention to my kids, my grandchildren but also to my wife. They deserve it. Now, I cannot pay that attention. I was not at the birthday of my grandson for example. I don't like it.

"My wife wants to quit now already! Five years ago!

"I have a paradise in Portugal. I want to quit to go there, play golf, eat fantastic food."

Although he has managed European giants like Barcelona and Bayern, he regards United as the biggest club on the planet.

"We were in the USA (in pre-season) and we played against Real Madrid, Liverpool, Roma, Inter Milan and LA Galaxy, five matches in three weeks - 300,000 fans and I think 280,000 of them in a red shirt.

"I know that Manchester United is the biggest club in the world," he said.

"Bigger than Real Madrid? Yes. In terms of global appeal, not history."

Join ST's Telegram channel and get the latest breaking news delivered to you.