Marco van Basten is the nickname of Marcel van Basten, a Dutch football player and coach who became the European player of the year of the seasons 1988, 1989 and 1992 three times. In 1992, FIFA named him the best football player in the world.
Marco van Basten: biography
Marco was born on October 31, 1964 in the family of semi-professional football player Jop van Basten and former gymnast Len van der Borg in the Dutch city of Utrecht. There, at the age of seven, he began his football career. Marco's first club was the local UVV team. After spending ten years in it, the athlete moved to another local club - Elinkwijk. However, his professional career began in 1981, when a seventeen-year-old football player was spotted by Ajax scouts. Aware of the great prospects, Marco van Basten (photo below in the article) agreed to offer to play for the famous Amsterdam football club. The trainers of Ajax and the physiologists immediately recognized his great potential. The path of the great striker began with a goal scored in the debut match, which took place on 04/03/1982. In the same game he replaced the famous Dutch football player Cruyff.
In the following season, Marco van Basten scored the ball in the net gate nine times. Nevertheless, the most important event in 1983 was his debut as part of the Dutch national team, which was held on September 7 in a match against Iceland. The first goal for the "orange" team, Marco scored only two weeks later in a very prestigious match against the eternal rival - Belgium.
Star of the national team
Marco was unrivaled in the Dutch higher football league "Eredivisi", unattainable to the defenders and ruthless to the goalkeepers. He was four times the best scorer of the championship, and in 1986 was awarded the "Golden Boots", scoring 37 goals in 26 games! During his stay in the "Ajax" Marco recorded on his account 151 goals in 172 games, and this outstanding performance was fixed victory in the Cup Winners Cup.
Moving to Milan
Parting with the Amsterdam "Ajax" was now only a matter of time. Many famous clubs lined up to sign a contract with Van Basten, including Barcelona, but Marco decided to move to Milan, which was then reorganized by Italian media tycoon Silvio Berlusconi. The transfer was a dream deal for the club "red-black", which paid for the 22-year-old star of the "orange" only 800 thousand dollars. In the end, two other Dutch superstars, Frank Rijkaard and Ruud Gullit, also became "Rossoneri". At that time, no one could have expected the trio to rule European football the next five years.
Marco van Basten: best goals
Nevertheless, the Dutch striker was still ahead. Having missed most of the season's matches, footballer Marco van Basten (photo is given in the article) came out only as a substitute in the Dutch national team for Euro 1988 in West Germany. In the first match, the Netherlands team showed a rather weak football - the game ended in a loss to the USSR team. Dutch coach Rinus Michels for the next match in the group against the British decided to put Marco in the starting lineup and this decision hit the bull's-eye! Utrecht Swan played one of the best matches in his career, scoring a hat-trick and sending the England team home. And this was only the beginning of a solo performance! In the semifinal match against the hosts of the championship, Marco scored an incredible goal, literally jamming the ball into the net. It happened on the 88th minute of the match, and thanks to this blow Holland reached the Euro Final, where she again met with the USSR team. In contrast to the group match, the "orange" showed excellent football and surpassed their opponents. The match ended with a score of 2: 0 and one of the most outstanding goals in the history of football. At the 54th minute of the game, Marco struck at an incredible angle, defeating the Soviet goalkeeper. The ball is still considered the most beautiful of those that were scored in the finals of football competitions!
On Euro-88, Marco van Basten scored goals five times, becoming not only the most productive scorer of the championship, but also his best player.
Marco returned to Milan even more star than he was before the European Championships. In the fall of 1988, he received two of the most prestigious French football awards - "The Golden Ball" and the title of the player of the year according to the version of the magazine World Soccer. Moreover, he graduated from the 1988/1989 season with 32 titles, of which three are the most prestigious in club football - the European champion (scoring a double in the final game against Steaua Bucureşti), the owner of the Intercontinental Cup and the European Super Cup. In addition, Marco was once again awarded the title of the best European football player of the year according to the French football magazine (1989).
Repetition of success
The following season, Marco van Basten repeated 19 goals scored in Serie A, but this time he was enough to become the top scorer of the competition. Moreover, the Dutchman was once again successful in European and international club competitions. Unfortunately, the achievements in the national team turned out to be completely opposite. The Dutch were considered one of the favorites in the race for the World Cup. Reality, however, turns out to be completely different. The team did not win a single match and dropped out of the tournament after a disgraceful match against the Germans when it lost 1: 2.
At the peak of the form
Footballer Marco van Basten next season began with impressive matches against Napoli in Serie A and IFK Gothenburg, during which he scored 4 goals, including an incredible "bicycle" strike in the competitions, which have since been called the Champions League. In addition, at the end of 1992, Marco for the third time in his career received the "Golden Ball" award, and was also named the player of the year as FIFA, and the magazine "World Football". Hammered in just three months, 12 goals promised him another great season, full of trophies and personal achievements. But it all ended suddenly and unexpectedly.
End of career
The ankle injury, which was his nightmare several years ago, was repeated, only this time she put an end to his remarkable career. In 1993, the fourth time going to surgery, Marco felt that it was time to say goodbye to the sport. Although the football player appeared in the final match of the Champions League with "Marcel", he was not at all like the great striker Marco van Basten used to be. "Milan" was defeated with a score of 1: 0, but worse, lost one of the world's greatest players. Marco tried to fight the injury for another two years, but eventually had to retire on August 18, 1995 during the Berlusconi Trophy match. More than 70,000 fans, including the crying Capello, standing applauded while an outstanding football player made a circle of honor.
Back in line
Since 2003, Marco van Basten began to train as an assistant in the Ajax doubles team, but the following summer he was entrusted with the role of the head coach of the national team. The start was good, and the Dutch completed the qualification matches of the 2006 World Cup without defeats, but the team left the competition in the second qualifying round.
In March 2006, he played in a match in honor of Demetrio Albertini, scoring a goal before an early substitution in the first half.
In 2008, the legend of "Ajax" became the manager of his former club and completed the career of the coach of the national team, after in the summer of the same year the team lost to Russia in the quarterfinal of the European Championship. Despite his four-year contract with "Ajax", in May 2009, Marco resigned, after the club could not qualify for the European Cup.
After working as a commentator on the Dutch TV channel "Sport 1" in February 2012, Marco returned to the football field as the head of SC "Heerenveen", leading the club to the 8th place. In the next season, the team was already fifth.
04/18/2014 AZ Football Club announced that at the beginning of the 2014/2015 season, Marco van Basten will replace Dick Advocaat. But at the end of August, he took a vacation. In September, the parties agreed that Marco will become an assistant coach. In five matches held under his leadership, the team won twice and lost three times. After a year of work in AZ, he decided to take up the vacant position of assistant coach of the Dutch national team. In August 2016, Marco van Basten announced that he was leaving to work in FIFA.
Marco van Basten married Lisbeth van Kappelwein in 1993. The couple had two daughters, Rebecca and Deborah, and son Alexander.