Jordi Cruyff says the reaction to his father Johan’s death made the family realise the footballing icon “is part of everyone’s life”.
Barcelona, Ajax and Netherlands legend Cruyff passed away at the age of 68 last week following a battle with cancer, prompting an outpouring of emotion as the world remembers a sporting great.
Barca, the club with which Cruyff enjoyed so much success as a player and coach, held a memorial service at Camp Nou in the Dutchman’s honour on Tuesday, with all first-team players not still away on international duty and coach Luis Enrique in attendance.
Jordi Cruyff was also present, delivering a moving speech in which he thanked the millions of well-wishers across the globe and said their messages had resulted in the family wanting to share and celebrate Johan’s life.
“We’ve done everything very privately, as my father did not want the last few months of his life to be public,” he said.
“But we have realised that Johan is not only ours, he is part of everyone’s life, which is why we have opened things up.
“He has been an inspiration to everyone and that’s how we want people to remember him.”
Luis Enrique also delivered a few words on Cruyff.
“To speak of Cruyff is to speak of football. He made the sport about entertainment and titles,” said the Barca coach.
“Johan leaves us a fantastic legacy that will continue. We will always remember him.”