The official website for European football

Cruyff talks final memories and coaching legacy

Published: Monday 16 September 2013, 11.00CET
A four-times winner of what is now the UEFA Champions League, as player and coach, Johan Cruyff tells UEFA.com of his playing memories and his pride in his coaching legacy.

This content is streamed in such a way that it is protected and available only in a Flash format. Your device seems not to be compatible with our Flash video player.

 
 
 
Published: Monday 16 September 2013, 11.00CET

Cruyff talks final memories and coaching legacy

A four-times winner of what is now the UEFA Champions League, as player and coach, Johan Cruyff tells UEFA.com of his playing memories and his pride in his coaching legacy.

An innovator, a trailblazer, a maverick and a legend. As both player and coach Johan Cruyff was all these things throughout a career synonymous with what is now the UEFA Champion League.

A three-time European Cup winner as a forward with AFC Ajax – in successive seasons between 1971 and 1973 – Cruyff also led FC Barcelona to the trophy from the dugout in 1992.

No less significantly, the 48-cap Dutch international was a catalyst for what would become known as Total Football. "It had an enormous impact on the whole world," the 66-year-old said of Ajax's triumphant three-year run. "Even though there was not much television yet, it had a lot of impact, which eventually led to a lot of respect for Dutch football."

After helping revolutionise the way the game was played, Cruyff turned to coaching and his spell in charge of Barcelona brought them an elusive first European title – as well as setting the foundations for the club's style of play and, in turn, future glories.

"I came back to Spain in 1988. A whole transition needed to take place, in terms of the mentality, the style of playing, everything really. At the time we had a lot of good players. The biggest problem at Barcelona at the time was the board of directors. They were afraid to lose a European Cup once again. And we, we were convinced 100% that we would win."

Cruyff may no longer be coaching but his legacy is still obvious today as his acolytes go forth and succeed. "I am most proud when I look at how many players I coached became coaches themselves. The biggest example is Guardiola, of course."

Last updated: 22/11/13 9.06CET

Related information

Team profiles

http://www.uefa.com/uefachampionsleague/news/newsid=1993880.html#cruyff+talks+final+memories+coaching+legacy

  • © 1998-2014 UEFA. All rights reserved.
  • The CHAMPIONS LEAGUE and UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE words, the UEFA Champions League logo and trophy and the UEFA Champions League Final logos are protected by trade marks and/or copyright of UEFA. No use for commercial purposes may be made of such trade marks. Use of UEFA.com signifies your agreement to the Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy.