Piet Keizer

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Piet Keizer
Keizer in 1973
Personal information
Full name Petrus Johannes Keizer
Date of birth (1943-06-14)14 June 1943
Place of birth Amsterdam, Netherlands
Date of death 10 February 2017(2017-02-10) (aged 73)
Position(s) Left winger
Youth career
1953–1955 Amstel
1955–1961 Ajax
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1961–1974 Ajax 365 (146)
National team
1962–1974 Netherlands 34 (11)
Men's football
Representing  Netherlands
FIFA World Cup
Runner-up 1974 West Germany
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

Petrus Johannes "Piet" Keizer (14 June 1943 – 10 February 2017) was a Dutch professional footballer who played as a left winger. As part of the "Total Football" Ajax Amsterdam team of the 1960s and 1970s, Keizer was particularly notable during the successive managerial tenures of Rinus Michels and Stefan Kovacs (1965–1973). He is widely considered one of the greatest players in Dutch football history. Dutch writer Nico Scheepmaker once said: "Cruyff is the best, but Keizer is the better one".[1] UEFA website has described Keizer as "the genius on the left wing, the skillfull flanker, the superb foil to Johan Cruyff".[2] He was in the shadow of Johan Cruijff, with whom he formed the so-called royal couple. Keizer made frequent use of the scissor movement. Cruyff, in his posthumously released autobiography,[3] placed Keizer, as left winger, in his "ideal squad".

Club career[change | change source]

Keizer totalled 490 official matches for Ajax, scoring 189 goals between 1961 and 1974.[4] He played predominantly on the left-wing and with Ajax won 3 consecutive European Cups (1971, 1972, 1973), having lost the 1969 European Cup final to A.C. Milan. Also with Ajax, he won 6 Eredivisie titles, 5 KNVB Cups, 2 European Super Cups, 1 Intercontinental Cup and 1 Intertoto Cup.

In August 1973, under new Ajax manager George Knobel, the Ajax players voted in a secret ballot for Keizer to be the team's next captain, ahead of Johan Cruyff. Just weeks later Cruyff left Ajax to join Barcelona.[5]

International career[change | change source]

With the Dutch national team, Keizer played 34 times, scoring 11 goals.[6] He made his international debut in an 8-0 friendly win against the Netherlands Antilles in 1962. Keizer was selected by Netherlands manager, Rinus Michels, to play for the Dutch squad during the 1974 FIFA World Cup, but only started in the 0-0 draw against Sweden.[7] He wasn't used for the rest of the tournament and the World Cup final against Germany.

Keizer suddenly retired from football in October 1974, shortly after a row over tactics with Ajax manager Hans Kraay.[5][6][8]

Personal life[change | change source]

On 13 June 1967, Keizer married Jenny Hoopman.[9] The couple have two sons.[10]

Keizer died after a long battle with lung cancer in February 2017.[11]

Honours[change | change source]

Club[change | change source]


International[change | change source]


Related pages[change | change source]

References[change | change source]

  1. Hall of Fame: Piet Keizer
  2. 2.0 2.1 The greatest teams of all time: Ajax 1971–73. UEFA.com. Retrieved on 31 October 2015.
  3. Johan Cruyff, My Turn. The Autobiography, Macmillan, 2016, p. 273.
  4. Ajax-icoon Piet Keizer (73) overleden – Ajax (in Dutch)
  5. 5.0 5.1 "Piet Keizer: Ghost goal". Archived from the original on 14 September 2014. Retrieved 17 May 2014.
  6. 6.0 6.1 Piet Keizer
  7. 1974 Netherlands World Cup Squad at Planet World Cup. Planetworldcup.com. Retrieved on 9 November 2013
  8. Ajax-icoon Piet Keizer (73) overleden Archived 2017-02-18 at the Wayback Machine – Telegraaf (in Dutch)
  9. Het paar op weg naar de trouwzaal. gahetna.nl
  10. Ajax-elftal arriveert op Schiphol uit Londen. Piet Keizer met zoontje. gahetna.nl
  11. Niederlande trauern um Keizer – Parool (in Dutch)
  12. 1973: Ajax enjoy early success. UEFA.com. Retrieved on 31 October 2015.

Other websites[change | change source]