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Former Manchester United manager and current Netherlands boss Louis van Gaal has announced that he is battling prostate cancer.

The 70-year-old confirmed the diagnosis in on Dutch TV show Humberto on Sunday.

Van Gaal also revealed that he had previously kept his health issue a secret from his players and further explained that he has undergone 25 treatments with the hope of beating the illness.

He said:

I think you don’t tell people you work with like that because it might influence their choices, their decisions. So I thought they shouldn’t know.

You don’t die from prostate cancer, at least not in 90 percent of the cases.

It is usually other underlying diseases that kill you. But I had a pretty aggressive form, got irradiated 25 times. Then you have a lot of management to do in order to go through life.

I had preferential treatment in the hospital. I was allowed in through the back door when I went to an appointment and was immediately pushed into another room.

I have been treated wonderfully. Of course you tell your friends and relatives about it. The fact that nothing has come out [in the media] yet also says something about my environment. That’s great.

Former club United tweeted in response to the news:

Everybody at Manchester United is fully behind our former manager, Louis van Gaal, in his battle against cancer. Sending you strength and courage, Louis.

Van Gaal who took over as Netherlands national team coach for the third time last year, is set to lead the Oranje at the World Cup in Qatar later this year.

Our thoughts and prayers are with him.

By Debbie

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