Zenden told BBC Radio 5 live that his compatriot is not a wallflower when it comes to confrontation.
"He was winning the Golden Ball as player of the year and was playing as a left winger. Rivaldo himself thought he was better off playing behind the strikers, so as soon as he won this massive trophy he just said to Van Gaal, 'I don't want to play on the left no more. I want to play behind the strikers'.
"Van Gaal said 'right that's your decision'. What followed was that he sat on the bench because the manager decided where he would play. He's one of the managers who knows how to deal with the bigger players and when he thinks something is right that's what he will do. It comes close to how Sir Alex Ferguson worked."
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