Wed, 25 May 2022

THE HAGUE, Jan. 25 (Xinhua) -- Former Dutch international Wim Jansen, who suffered from Alzheimer's disease, has died at the age of 75, his former club Feyenoord announced on Tuesday.

Jansen has a great track record in the Dutch national team. Between 1967 and 1980 he played 65 times for "Oranje" and he played the World Cup finals of 1974 and 1978. As a midfielder, Jansen was also known as the "Silent force" or the "Mastermind" of the legendary "Total Football" team.

For Feyenoord Jansen was a club icon. He played 476 official games for the Rotterdam-based team and won the European Champions Cup and the World Cup with the club in 1970. In those years he formed an excellent midfield with Franz Hasil and Willem van Hanegem.

After a short-lived adventure with Washington Diplomats, he made the switch to Feyenoord's arch-rivals Ajax, following the advice of friend and former teammate Johan Cruijff. After his career as a player Jansen worked as a trainer for Feyenoord and also for Belgian side SC Lokeren, in Japan for Sanfrecce Hiroshima and Urawa Red Diamonds and for Scottish giants Celtic.

Jansen's football vision was widely respected. His famous "Oranje" 1974 teammate Cruijff, who died in 2016, called Jansen "one of only four men in the world worth listening to when talking about football."

At the end of October 2021, the biography "Wim Jansen, Mastermind" was presented, written by the Dutch journalist Yoeri van den Busken. In the book Jansen revealed he suffered from Alzheimer's disease. "How fast will it go? Or will it stay as it is now for a while?" Jansen said in the book.

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