Hendrik Johan Cruyff was born on April 25, 1947, in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. Johann died on March 24, 2016. Cruyff was one of the most talented playmakers in the history of football and the symbol of his country’s national football team, the Netherlands, in the 1970s. After his acting career, he was also very successful as a coach. Cruyff started playing football at the age of seven. Johann’s mother was a cleaner at Ajax Amsterdam, where she was discovered by Rhinos Michel. Johann’s son, Jordi, is also a famous footballer who has been his student in Barcelona for some time.
Cruyff’s style of play
He was usually a center-forward, but because of the overall system of the game, he played everywhere. Sometimes he took the ball to the depths of his own field, sometimes he went to the right or left-wing with a destructive action (for the opponent). Cruyff was a revolutionary for football at the time. Cruyff was known first and foremost for his technical prowess, speed, and leadership. However, his greatest strength was his overall outlook on the game, which set him apart as a playmaker.
Johan Cruyff’s club activity
Cruyff during his time playing for Ajax Amsterdam, F.C. has played for Barcelona, Los Angeles Aztec, Washington Diplomat, Levante, and Feyenoord Rotterdam.
Cruyff made his debut for Ajax on 15 November 1964 against Groningen, where he scored the only goal for Ajax in a 1-1 draw. But it was not until the 1966/1965 season that Johann caught everyone’s attention. After scoring two goals in the Dutch league match against Wilskrecht, he became a regular player of his team. In that season, Cruyff managed to score 23 goals in 25 games, and Ajax became the Dutch champions with him. The following year, he won the championship and became the Dutch football man of the year for the second time. Cruyff also reached the final of the European Club Cup with Ajax, in which he defeated the Italian team A. 1-4. Milan gave up.
In the 1970/1969 season, he won both Dutch Club Cups for the second time. He suffered a serious injury for the first time the following season. He returned to action after undergoing surgery against Eindhoven on October 30, 1970. In this game, for the first time, he wore the legendary number 14, because his whole team, Gary Moran, owned the number 9 Cruyff shirt. Since then, Cruyff has appeared in most games with the number 14. On November 29, 1970, in a match against A. Fell. Alkmaar, which was accompanied by an 8-1 victory, achieved a record of 6 goals in one game. In the same season, Ajax won the European Club Cup for the first time with a 2-0 victory in the final match of the European Club Cup against Panathinaikos Athens. In the same year, Cruyff also became the European Footballer of the Year for the first time. In the 1971/72 season, Ajax won the European Championship title with Cruyff against Inter Milan. In the final, Cruyff scored both of Ajax’s goals against Inter. The following autumn, Ajax won the Club World Cup by beating Independiente of Argentina. In January 1973, they won the European Super Cup with a 3-2 victory over Glasgow Rangers of Scotland. Ajax finished the 1972/73 season with their third consecutive league title. This season, Cruyff in the derby match against Amsterdam scored his first and last goal of his own. In the summer of 1973, Cruyff led Ajax to Barcelona after winning six league titles, four knockout titles, three European Championships, one Club World Cup, and one European Super Cup. Left. The Catalans paid around 6 million Dutch gold for the transfer of this player.
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Cruyff became the Catalans’ favorite player from the start, first and foremost because of one of his statements that he chose Barcelona over Real Madrid because he could not play for a club with the then-dictator of Spain, Francisco Franco has been linked. After that, his popularity increased because he named his son Jordi in the form of Catalan letters. Barcelona won the Spanish Club Championship with Cruyff for the first time since 1960, and in the same year, Cruyff was again named European Footballer of the Year. Cruyff scored his famous goal during his time at Barça. In the game against Atletico Madrid, Cruyff jumped into the air and, despite having the ball behind him, without seeing it, entered it into the Atletico goal with the heel of his right foot.
Johan Cruyff in America
He moved to the United States in 1979, when he was over 30 years old. He signed a contract with the Aztec Los Angeles Club. He stayed there for only one season. The following season, he played for the Washington Diplomats for 1 year in Washington, DC.
Return to the Netherlands
After a brief stint at Spanish club Levante, he returned to his homeland, the Netherlands. Having won two titles with Ajax in 1982 and 1983, the team did not renew Cruyff’s contract and he moved to Rotterdam. In the final season of Asher Feyenoord Rotterdam, they once again won both Dutch club titles. He retired in 1984.
Cruyff in the national team
Cruyff’s first national game was on September 7, 1966, in Rotterdam in the European Cup qualifier against Hungary (2: 2). It was in the second national game that his hasty and thoughtless style of play led to misfortune. Cruyff was sent off in the 76th minute of the game against Czechoslovakia by East Germany referee Rudy Glukner. He was thus the first Dutch player to be sent off in a national match. After a one-year ban from the Dutch Football Association, he was able to return to the national team on September 13, 1967. In this match, just two minutes after the qualifying match for the European Cup, he scored the winning goal for East Germany. Cruyff was the captain of the team in 1974 when the Netherlands were runners-up in the World Cup. In that cup, the Netherlands defeated Argentina by 4 goals in a brilliant performance, and Brazil, the defending champions, took the lead with 2 goals. But in the final against Germany, the host lost 1: 2.
In just two years coaching Ajax, he won the Dutch Cup twice, in 1986 and 1987, and the European Cup once (1987). By doing so, he was able to follow in the footsteps of his predecessor and teacher, Rhinos Michel. Cruyff once again left Amsterdam for Catalonia in 1988. Under his leadership, Barcelona won the La Liga title four times in a row, the Spanish Cup once, the 1992 European Club Cup, and the European Super Cup once. Cruyff brought in players such as Ronald Koeman, Michael Laudrup, Hristo Stoichkov, and Romario. Cruyff’s name has remained a lifeline for Barcelona fans to this day.