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Author: Isaque Argolo | Creation Date: 2021-12-06 17:34:52
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Johannes Cruijff — Cruyff —, one of the best footballers of all time, maximum representation of Gloria Ajax, absolute commander of the Dutch team and the main one appointed as a figure that changed the history of FC Barcelona. Prominent in the late second half of the 1960s and peaking in the first half of the 1970s, Cruijff, the tactical genius, carries a legacy in football history that few can match his teachings.
He was a player with a strong and decisive personality, always commanding his teams and dictating positions and the rhythm of his own. Cruijff organized the orchestra. He was, in fact, a true conductor of his teams. His confidence on the field stood out above the others. With his considerable height and tough body type, he didn't look like a player who used to lose contests. He, however, does not use his physique to stand out, but his impressive speed, intelligence and ball handling, both to the left and to the right.
Technically speaking, yes; Cruijff had a full technical repertoire, as he had no shortcomings in his play with the ball, as well as, of course, having his own more practical tricks to get rid of an opponent, like a characteristic spin and heel passes.
Completely endowed with the gift of tactical perception, a player with knowledge well above the average, Cruijff, the axis of his teams, commanded the entire game system which, in turn, revolved around the ace, the leader. Cruijff moved across the field, coming to receive the ball even on a line equivalent to the defensive line. Furthermore, it was common for Cruijff to initiate the actions of his teams through a ball received by the side of the field, too. With a series of electric dribbles, at high speed and often changing direction, Cruijff found it easy to get into the opposing area. He, however, soon after taking an individual action, used to also combine with teammates or throw them with a precise pass. His passes complemented his tactical knowledge, besides, of course, being technically well applied.
The shot —largely technical — was diverse and full of repertoire. As much as Cruijff was most often characterized as a playmaker, he still possessed an excellent conclusion to the play.
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Cruijff, considered a centre-forward, moved all around the pitch.
His style was elegant, artistic and full of tactical certainties. When close to a teammate who owned the ball, a very common feature of Cruijff's style of play was to receive or even take the ball from his teammate and lead the pace of play. With his broad tactical insight, Cruijff read opposing defensive flaws, thus leading his teammates to exploit them.
Another interesting feature of Cruijff's style is the lateral play. As much as he was an ambidextrous player, Cruijff used to cross balls in the area with the outside of his foot, thus giving a more elegant touch to the throw. He, moreover, when the said first move was not taken, used to carry out his electric runs towards the goal, combining with a teammate or performing an individual action.
As much as, mainly, he was not a player characterized as defensive skills, Cruijff, when he saw an opportunity, did not run away from 50-50 disputes and always tried to tackle. Moreover, Cruijff pressed the opponent when needed.