"Just look at the [men's] European Championship [side]," Van Gaal, who has been linked with the vacant men's position, told the women's team ahead of their flight to Tokyo.
"There you see a bunch of elite stars that can't do it. I've always seen that under [coach] Sarina [Wiegman] there is a team that goes through fire. So make sure that you, as a team, go to the Olympics an go for gold."
Van Gaal has twice been manager of the men's national side -- in his first stint, he failed to achieved qualification to the 2002 World Cup but Netherlands to third place in 2014 when he made his return.
At club level, he won the Champions League Ajax in 1995 and won major trophies with Barcelona, Bayern Munich and Manchester United, while he also led AZ Alkmaar to a surprise league title in the Eredivisie.