VIP Lounge was a series of portraits produced in the late 1980’s of well-known Dutch people who gained international fame for their professional achievements. In this programme our guest was Dutch football legend Johan Cruijff (1947-2016). After rising to fame as a player for his hometown Amsterdam’s team Ajax, he played on the Dutch team in the sensational final match of the FIFA World Cup won by Germany in 1974, demonstrating his famous “Cruijff Turn” and was named player of the tournament. His many other distinctions would later include European Player of the Century in 1999, and he came in second after Pelé for the title of World Player of the Century in the same year.
It was at Ajax that Cruijff began to apply his philosophy of Total Football, moved to Barcelona’s team in the 1970’s, and eventually returned to the Netherlands to play for Feyenoord, among others. He became Barça’s team coach in the later 80’s and continued an illustrious career. Cruijff is regarded as the first true European football superstar and was without a doubt one of the greatest players and coaches in football history.
Producer: Rob Groen
Broadcast: September 14, 1987