Tag: cruyff

The decline of Dutch ball-playing centre-backs

BARRY HULSHOFF – beard unkempt, socks rolled down and a mullet with a life of its own – was something of a prototype. Looking something like the love child of Rod Stewart…

Johan Cruyff: talent spotter, manager, orchestrator and genius

Illustration by Federico Manasse The multifarious sphere of footballing history encompasses many greats. Some prove greatness via a trophy cabinet, some gain notoriety for a single goal or piece of skill, some…

Johan Cruyff: the American diaries

Johan Cruyff’s impact on football was far-reaching to say the least. His influence on the game in the Netherlands and Spain has been rightly lauded, and his role in the revolutionary Total…

Jordi Cruyff and a career unfairly spent in the shadows

Nature or nurture? It’s a question psychologists have debated for centuries. In the context of sport, it’s interesting that so many gifted individuals have raised children who have also gone on to…

The renaissance of Ajax, a superclub back on the map

Pareidolia – the perceiving of familiarity where none exists – is a more common psychological phenomenon than you might think. Frequently reported examples include; finding images in cloud formations, visualising a man…

Where do you draw the line between progression and success?

After Luis Enrique announced his seemingly inevitable resignation as Barcelona coach, he made a poignant statement: “The reason clearly had to do with the way of life I need to have in this…

The colossal legacy of Ajax mentor Jany van der Veen

*Main photo: Jany van der Veen is standing in the back row, fifth from the left Many remember the great Ajax team that dominated the 1970s and the legendary Dutch side that…

‘That was Cruyff’: how one man changed football

‘That was Cruyff’. So many things in football are indeed Johan Cruyff. Senior TFT writer Jon Townsend, a man heavily influenced by Cruyff as a player and now coach, looks back in celebratory fashion at the beautiful gifts the Dutch legend left behind.