The official website for European football

How practice made perfect for Litmanen

Published: Tuesday 5 January 2010, 10.00CET
Jari Litmanen put Finnish football on the map in a career which included UEFA honours with AFC Ajax and Liverpool FC. He tells UEFA Training Ground about the hard work which put him on top.
How practice made perfect for Litmanen
Jari Litmanen won the UEFA Champions League in 1995 with Ajax ©Getty Images
Published: Tuesday 5 January 2010, 10.00CET

How practice made perfect for Litmanen

Jari Litmanen put Finnish football on the map in a career which included UEFA honours with AFC Ajax and Liverpool FC. He tells UEFA Training Ground about the hard work which put him on top.

There can be little doubt that Jari Litmanen will go down in history as one of the greatest players to have ever played for Finland and now, in an interview with the Training Ground, he reveals how extra practice was key to his success.

Fantastic Finn
Named Finland's Golden Player in 2004 to mark UEFA's 50th anniversary, Litmanen won the UEFA Champions League with AFC Ajax in 1995, as well as tasting UEFA Cup success with Liverpool FC in 2001 in a career which still continues after 22 years, back at his first club FC Lahti with 129 Finland caps to his name. In his two-part interview with the Training Ground he tells the story of how he nearly opted for a career in ice hockey over football, why Kevin Keegan was a childhood hero and why he looks back with particular fondness on his time in Amsterdam. With contributions from Finland coach Stuart Baxter and Litmanen's former coach Harri Kampman, click here to watch now.

Big names
The Training Ground hosts over 270 videos and features exclusive masterclass sessions from big-name players such Kaká, Andrea Pirlo, Zlatan Ibrahimović and Xavi Hernández – among arguably the greatest array of football talent assembled for a learning-based website. Coaches Roy Hodgson and Lars Lagerbäck have also been recruited to help inform and educate players and coaches of all ages and abilities, while Europe's top referees offer guides to rules, regulations and much more, all as part of the most comprehensive guide to skills and tactics on the internet.

Last updated: 05/01/10 10.52CET

Related information

Team profiles

http://www.uefa.com/news/newsid=927891.html#how+practice+made+perfect+litmanen

UEFA.com features

European football backs diversity, inclusion and accessibility
  • European football backs diversity, inclusion and accessibility
  • Monaco memories - UEFA Direct 171 out now
  • Luís Figo joins UEFA as Football Advisor
  • UEFA launches anti-doping reporting platform
  • UEFA & FARE network unite to promote inclusion, diversity and accessibility
  • #EqualGame focus at London sports business summit
  • 2017 UEFA Grassroots Awards winners unveiled
  • Grassroots gold goes to Northern Irish club
  • ‘Football gives you freedom’: Hungarian blind footballer stars in UEFA’s #EqualGame campaign
  • Keeping competitive balance - Aleksander Čeferin
1 of 10