Football Legend Johan Cruyff has lost his battle against cancer, as he died on Thursday at age 68.
Cruyff was acclaimed star who made his name as a forward with Ajax and Barcelona, was European footballer of the year three times.
“On March 24 2016 Johan Cruyff (68) died peacefully in Barcelona, surrounded by his family after a hard fought battle with cancer. It’s with great sadness that we ask you to respect the family’s privacy during their time of grief,” read a statement on the World of Johan Cruyff website.
“With great sadness we have learned of the death of Johan Cruyff. Words are not enough,” wrote the Dutch football federation on Twitter. Ajax issued a short statement that read:
“Johan Cruyff has died in Barcelona at the age of 68. The greatest Ajax player of all time had suffered with lung cancer since October last year. Ajax share in this great loss and wish the families much strength.”
Cruyff, who was a heavy smoker until undergoing heart surgery in 1991, made his illness public in October last year. He was regarded as one of the game’s greatest players.