Real Madrid president Florentino Perez has paid tribute to ex-Barcelona player and boss Johan Cruyff, labelling him a ‘footballing legend’ after the Dutchman passed away on Thursday.
Cruyff, widely considered as the modern founder of football, lost his battle with cancer at the age of just 68 prompting an outpouring of tributes from across the world.
As a player, Cryuff won three consecutive European Cups with Ajax and won the World Player of the Year award on three occasions. He was part of the Dutch team that made the final of the 1974 World Cup losing out to West Germany.
He made the switch to Barcelona as a player and won La Liga and the Copa del Rey. When he returned as boss, Cryuff won La Liga four times and also guided Barca to European Cup glory in 1992.
In a statement on Real’s official website, Perez said: “A footballing legend, an icon of the sport, has passed away. I would like to express my deep sorrow following the death of Johan Cruyff and offer, on behalf of Real Madrid, and all Real Madrid supporters, our condolences and sympathy to Barcelona and above all to his wife and children.
“He was an extraordinary player who defined an era, and therefore today is a very sad day for the footballing world.”