Three-time European Cup winner Keizer mourned

Piet Keizer, a one-club man and instrumental member of the Ajax side that won three successive European Cups in the early 1970s, has passed away aged 73.

Piet Keizer (back row, sixth from left) was integral to Ajax's trophy-laden period of the 1970s
Piet Keizer (back row, sixth from left) was integral to Ajax's trophy-laden period of the 1970s ©Getty Images

Ajax and the Netherlands are mourning the passing of Piet Keizer.

Keizer, a one-club man, died aged 73 following a short illness. As a player he was a key member of the Ajax side that won three successive European Champion Clubs' Cups at the start of the 1970s. A left-winger, he struck up a formidable partnership with Johan Cruyff as Ajax's freewheeling 'Total Football' conquered Europe.

Keizer's career spanned from 1961 to 1974, during which time he made 490 appearances for Ajax, placing him fourth on the Amsterdam club's all-time list. He won six league titles and five Dutch Cups and retired aged 31 – with 34 Netherlands caps and 11 international goals to his name – before becoming a scout and technical adviser to the club. He also won the UEFA Super Cup in 1972 and 1973 and the 1972 European/South American Cup.

"His passing away hurts," said Oranje coach Danny Blind. "He was a beautiful player. Piet saw football as something that should be beautiful above all else."