Johan Neeskens

Johan Neeskens 1981

Johan Neeskens ( born September 15, 1951 in Heemstede, North Holland ) is a Dutch football player and coach.

  • 3.1 As a player

Playing career


Neeskens began in 1968 with Racing Club Heemstede in the Eerste Divisie with the professional football before moving the following year to the Dutch club Ajax Amsterdam tradition in the Eredivisie. At the beginning of his time in Amsterdam, the then young star played at right back, but moved in the course of the following years in the central midfield, where he pulled the strings of the team behind Johan Cruyff. In 1971 he got his first national championship, which could be defended on the season. Between 1971 and 1973 Neeskens won with Ajax three times the European Champions Cup and the UEFA Super Cup once each and the World Cup. In 1974, he no longer followed his compatriot Cruyff to Barcelona, where he gained more titles, but as successful as in Amsterdam. When winning the European Cup Winners' Cup in 1979 Neeskens was over the full season on the field and led his team to 4-3 win over Fortuna Dusseldorf aet. During this time he received from the fans the name Johan Segon, which means as much as Johan the Second and a nod to Johan Cruyff is. After five years in Spain Neeskens joined the New York Cosmos to North America. With them he won the NASL championship in 1980 and 1982 and four division titles. In the U.S., he played with Franz Beckenbauer, Giorgio Chinaglia and Carlos Alberto Torres in a team. After the dissolution of New York in 1984, the midfielder went back to the Netherlands, where the FC Groningen to secure his services. After only one year Neeskens tried again in the U.S. to gain a foothold and switched to the Minnesota Strikers and in the following season to Fort Lauderdale Sun. Between 1986 and 1991, the former national team participated in three different clubs in Switzerland, and finally ended his career.


As early as 1970 was Neeskens National Player of the Netherlands. He became famous for the finals of the football World Cup 1974 in Germany. In the 2nd minute of the game then 22 -year-old goal on a penalty to make it 1-0 for the Netherlands against Germany; the game went for his team but ultimately lost 1-2. Since then football commentators repeatedly speak of the Neeskens - variant of the shot from the penalty spot: Shoot tough in the center of the goal, while the goalkeeper dives into a corner of the net. But according to Sepp Maier he shot his penalty always in the seen by the keeper from the right corner and has warped in the World Cup final because he was " not properly made ​​a little cut in the ground " out of nervousness has (left on the picture you can see the chalk the penalty spot on deaf ). With the Football World Cup 1978 in Argentina, he was for the second time Vice World Champion, this time his team lost the final against hosts Argentina after extra time 1:3.

Coaching career

In his subsequent career Neeskens worked as a coach for the Swiss clubs FC Baar FC train and FC Zurich, for the German Oberliga side FC Singen 04, was then an assistant coach of the Dutch national team and coach of the U-18 national team and was then coach of the NEC Nijmegen. For the Soccer World Cup in Germany he reinforced. Coaching staff of the Australian national team as assistant coach Guus Hiddink Following the World Cup, he returned to FC Barcelona, there to be assistant coach Frank Rijkaard as already at the Dutch national team. After his retirement also Neeskens was released at FCB. Since 26 October 2008, he coached the B team of the Netherlands. For the 2009/10 season he is again on the side of Frank Rijkaard assistant coach at Galatasaray Istanbul. His work as an assistant coach was terminated on 20 October 2010, after Frank Rijkaard and he was dismissed. For the 2011/12 season, he took over as coach at South African first division club Mamelodi Sundowns. After his team had played earlier in the season 2012/13 with little success and located after twelve days on the penultimate game in the standings, the club and Neeskens the cooperation ended on 2 December 2012.


As a player


  • Dutch champion Ajax Amsterdam: 1972, 1973
  • KNVB Cup with Ajax Amsterdam: 1971, 1972
  • European Champions Cup with Ajax Amsterdam: 1971, 1972, 1973
  • UEFA Super Cup with Ajax Amsterdam: 1972
  • World Cup with Ajax Amsterdam: 1972
  • Torneig Gamper with FC Barcelona: 1974, 1975, 1976, 1977
  • Copa del Rey FC Barcelona: 1978
  • European Cup winner with FC Barcelona: 1979
  • NASL championship with the New York Cosmos: 1980, 1982
  • Winning the Eastern Division, National Conference with New York Cosmos: 1980, 1981
  • Winning the Eastern Division with the New York Cosmos: 1982, 1983
  • Trans-Atlantic Cup Championships with the New York Cosmos: 1980, 1983, 1984


  • Vice World Champion: 1974, 1978
  • 3rd place European Championship: 1976