One of the greatest soccer players and greatest soccer minds ever Johan Cruyff has been diagnosed with lung cancer. Cruyff learned of this diagnosis over the past week and is undergoing further tests. This comes a little over a week after it was revealed that German great Gerd Muller has Alzheimer’s disease.
Johan Cruyff was one of the first adopters of the “Total Football” concept that led the Netherlands to a runner up finish in the 1974 FIFA World Cup against Muller’s West Germany. Cruyff also won the Ballon d’Or three times as a player and three European Cups playing for Dutch team Ajax.
After winning the La Liga title at Barcelona and a spell in the United States in NASL, Cruyff went into management and brought “Total Football” with him. His biggest achievement as manager was his eight year run at Barcelona. Barcelona won four straight La Liga titles as well as the 1992 European Cup. This wound up being Barcelona’s renaissance that stands to this day.
Cruyff’s former teams acknowledged and expressed their support for Cruyff for a full recovery.
Zeer geschrokken hebben we kennis genomen van de ernstige ziekte van Johan Cruijff. Onze gedachten zijn bij Johan, zijn vrouw en familie.
— KNVB (@KNVB) October 22, 2015
(Translated to “Very startled, we have taken note of the serious illness of Johan Cruyff. Our thoughts are with Johan, his wife and family.”)
— AFC Ajax (@AFCAjax) October 22, 2015
(Translated to “Ajax is deeply impressed with all the messages of support for Johan Cruyff. Huge thanks everyone.”)
Before beginning her presentation, VP Susana Monje sent a message of support to Johan Cruyff, who just announced that he has lung cancer.
— FC Barcelona (@FCBarcelona) October 22, 2015
Johan, you'll win this one too! The whole Club is behind you.
— Josep Maria Bartomeu (@jmbartomeu) October 22, 2015
As someone who holds both Johan Cruyff and Gerd Muller in high regard and as personal idols of mine, I would like to personally express that they are in my thoughts and wish them both the best.