Johan Cruyff is 67 today. To celebrate his birthday FIFA have come up with 14 (his number at the 1974 World Cup) of his most memorable quotes.
There are countless videos out there showing highlights of Cruyff’s career, but it’s hard to ignore one titled Johan Cruyff is art.
Anyway, here are some of the weird and wonderful comments Cruyff has come out with down the years.
“We showed the world you could enjoy being a footballer; you could laugh and have a fantastic time. I represent the era which proved that attractive football was enjoyable and successful, and good fun to play too.”
Summarising his time with the national team
“One trophy is good, but two are better. That way, when a hero wears his medals on his chest, at least his steps are level as he walks by.”
Expressing his logical arguments on footballing honours
“Footballers from the street are more important than trained coaches.”
Sharing his views on the value of coaching
“Every disadvantage has its advantage.”
His ‘cup half full’ perspective regarding every negative situation
“If we have the ball, the other team can’t score.”
Explaining the simplicity of football
“If you’re behind, you have to bring on a defender.”
Revealing approach to dealing with a deficit
“If I wanted you to understand it, I would have explained it better.”
Addressing a journalist
“Before I make a mistake, I don’t make that mistake.”
The Dutchman shares his approach to avoiding errors
“I’ve got two masseurs. One plays in the second division, the other in the third. Both of them can shoot just as well with their left and right feet. But are any of my team two-footed? For me, it’s a matter of technique.”
Expressing his frustration with his players’ lack of versatility
“I don’t think you can say the name Cruyff without everybody knowing who you’re talking about.”
An example of the Oranje legends well-known self confidence
“If you can’t win, make sure you don’t lose.”
Giving his perspective on damage limitation on the football pitch
“Football is a game of mistakes. Whoever makes the fewest mistakes wins.”
The Dutchman again breaking the game down to its simplest components
“What is speed? The sports press often confuses speed with insight. See, if I start running slightly faster than someone else, I seem faster.”
Trying to get across the difference beteween a quick mind and fast feet
“Coincidence is logical.”
Breaking down his beliefs on chance
Thanks to FIFA for compiling the quotes.