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Van Basten, Gullit and Rijkaard

Discussion in 'Football Forum' started by 2cents, Feb 3, 2018.

  1. Feb 3, 2018
    #1

    2cents Full Member

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    I kind of missed these guys' peak in the late 80s, they all had massive reputations when I was getting into football a few years later but Van Basten was always injured and the other two were winding down.

    So how great were they, who do they compare with? Especially Van Basten, what kind of striker was he and where does he rank?

  2. Feb 3, 2018
    #2

    Enigma_87 You know who

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    One of the best strikers of all time alongside Muller, Fenomeno and Eusebio. Very elegant, yet powerful in the air. Very agile, and quick on the turn, could lose defenders with an ease. Without a doubt the best in the 80's and had a knack of scoring some awesome goals too both for club and country.

    That trio was pretty awesome and part of the best Milan team in history - probably of all time before Barcelona came along 10 years ago..
  3. Feb 3, 2018
    #3

    sun_tzu The Art of Bore

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    Pretend inferiority and encourage his arrogance.
    Van basten is probably the 2nd best c.f. I've seen after original Ronaldo.. . Both blighted by injury of course

    Rijkaard was a fantastic player able to play in defence or midfield... again one of the best I have ever seen in his position especially as that defensive midfielder as he allowed baresi at Milan and Koeman in the national team the freedom to go forwards... ps Koeman was also an exceptional player who along with the three you mentioned gave Holland such a string spine of a team.

    Gullit is a player I feel the passage of time has been less kind to... he was great and well suited to the football at the time with his ability to break offside traps with running from deeper and he was physically strong and quick... obviously he relied later In his career more on his ability and passing ultimately playing sweeper

    4 fantastic players though for me van basten being the best of the bunch and had it not been for injuries he may have been rated even higher.

    He was a very complete striker for the time when you tended to have quick poachers up top with wither a big guy alongside or a player in the 10 role... in that respect you could say he was a nine and a half... comfortable with the build up play good in the air and probably the best finisher in the world as well

    That a.c. Milan team with the three of them was incredible... though having
    Tassotti....baresi...costacurta.....maldini
    As a defence certainly helped!
  4. Feb 3, 2018
    #4

    Lord SInister Full Member

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    Most ideal striker of all time. Ronaldo may have been more devastating, Muller may have been more prolific, Kocsis may have been a monster in air, Romario may have been a genius, but they all lacked what Van Basten had.


    Rijkaard is the greatest defensive midfielder of all time, period.

    And Gullit is an enigma, one of the most complete player of all time, an all time great, still so aloof.
  5. Feb 3, 2018
    #5

    Number1 Banned Verified Moaner

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    Van Basten was brilliant, injury ended his career early though (late 20's i believe), medical staff probably could have done more for him today.
  6. Feb 3, 2018
    #6

    Raees Boing Boing Baggies

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    Rijkaard is ranked as one of if not the best CDM of all time.

    Van Basten is for me alongside Ronaldo, Romario and Muller the best striker/centre forward of all time. I don't count Eusebio as a pure striker. For me, I'd probably rate him as the best all rounder of them all and the most complete. He had no weakness - top level wasn't as good as R9/Romario but his bottom level was crazy good.



    Gullit is harder to define. More of an all-round powerhouse, who could function as an AM or wide midfielder but blessed with power, pace, guile. Proper athlete. He wouldn't get as highly rated as those two in respect of a single position, but he was just as key as those two for what he brought to the table. The 'engine'.

    Last edited: Feb 3, 2018
  7. Feb 3, 2018
    #7

    harms Full Member Scout

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    They were amazing.

    It's truly ridiculous how that Milan team had 5 all-time greats — van Basten, Gullit (a bit of a stretch as his competitors in the all-time pool are literally the greatest, but such a unique player), Rijkaard, Baresi and Maldini.
  8. Feb 3, 2018
    #8

    2mufc0 Full Member

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    MvB had everything you would want in a striker, probably the most complete of all time.
  9. Feb 3, 2018
    #9

    Lord SInister Full Member

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    yup, even the likes of Madrid 1950s, Barca 2010s, Ajax/Holland 1970s, Bayern 1970s don't have same amount of all time greats position wise.
  10. Feb 3, 2018
    #10

    POF Full Member

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    I find this really strange too. At the time, Gullit was seen as the best of the 3. He captained the Dutch to win Euro 88 and was very much the marquee player in that team. Van Basten was a better player (an incredible goal scorer) but Gullit usually had the limelight in that era. Van Basten wasn’t even first choice for the Dutch in Euro 88 where Johnny Bosman was planned to be their starting striker.

    That Milan team was an absolute juggernaut. They were the best defensive side I’ve ever seen. Tassotti, Costacurta, Baresi and Maldini at the back. Albertini and Rijkaard shielding the defence. They were impossible to break down. Gullit, Van Basten, Donadoni and Massaro had the quality to score and usually one was enough. Rossi was such an average keeper but he didn’t need to be any better.
  11. Feb 3, 2018
    #11

    devilish Phil Neville's #1 fan

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    AC Milan of the that time is the best team I've ever seen play.
  12. Feb 3, 2018
    #12

    2cents Full Member

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    Ah, these four together I remember quite well, and then a bit later when Panucci I think replaced Tassotti. Best defensive unit in the history of the game probably.
  13. Feb 3, 2018
    #13

    Needham Full Member

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    You'll come across Liverpool fans who'll say their 89 team would have taken them.
  14. Feb 3, 2018
    #14

    11101 Full Member

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    From what i remember of them, all three were amongst the greatest to ever play in their respective positions.

    That whole team was ridiculous, still the best I've ever seen. They didn't lose much and it was almost unheard of them to concede more than one goal.
  15. Feb 3, 2018
    #15

    Spoony The People's President

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    Gullit was regarded as the best in the world when Maradona started to wane.
  16. Feb 3, 2018
    #16

    NoLogo Full Member

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    Early 2000s team was also ridiculous. Kinda sad to see how low they have fallen in the last decade.
  17. Feb 3, 2018
    #17

    Lord SInister Full Member

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    I was going to laugh at Liverpool fans for this, than I saw who posted this:lol:.

    But than again Liverpool fans are capable of being this delusional.
  18. Feb 3, 2018
    #18

    sun_tzu The Art of Bore

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    I'd agree with that... other than the keeper was Galli for the main period of the Dutch trio
    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Giovanni_Galli
    I always thought he was unlucky not to get more caps for Italy... though they did have some good keepers

    Also crazy tassotti didn't get his first cap till he was over 30 considering just how good he and that Milan defence were
  19. Feb 3, 2018
    #19

    devilish Phil Neville's #1 fan

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    Nah Milan best team ever was the one between 1989-2000.

    AC Milan were always rotten at top level. Berlusconi always believed he's some of football genius when in reality he had the football brain of a 15 year old playing football manager. What kept AC Milan on top was the dedication of many people at the club some of whom backstabbing their youth club to help AC Milan, its youth academy and Berlusconi's £££. No wonder why when Berlusconi's money dried out the club went in shambles. They might have won like a big club but their infrastructure is worse than that of a mid tier EPL side (no stadium, little merchandising footprint etc)

    As said the 1989-1990 team is in my opinion the best team the world had ever seen. Pep's Barcelona would beat them in the GK department (Rossi was crap) and go toe to toe with them in midfield and forward line (Basquets, Xavi, Iniesta, Messi, Pedro and Villa vs Gullit, Rijkaard, Ancelotti, Colombo, Donadoni and Van Basten would truly be a clash of titans) but while the latter wouldn't struggle too much in outsmarting the likes of Puyol and Pique the former will find the defence of steel (Tassotti, Baresi, Costacurta and Maldini). Its a shame that the Berlusconi's messing up + the hype surrounding what I think to be the most overrated manager in football history (Sacchi) didn't allow AC Milan and Italy to dominate football the way Pep's Barca did and Spain did.
  20. Feb 3, 2018
    #20

    devilish Phil Neville's #1 fan

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    There's no shame in that considering that at the time Italy had Beppe Bergomi. Baresi himself had to wait for Scirea to die (literally) before consolidating his first team place with the national team.

    To think that now they have Darmian in first team is depressing.
  21. Feb 3, 2018
    #21

    RooneyLegend Full Member

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    Amazing players, all three of them. Gullit and Rijkaard are some of the greatest players in their respective positions and Van Basten is one of the best players in football history.
  22. Feb 3, 2018
    #22

    sun_tzu The Art of Bore

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    Pretend inferiority and encourage his arrogance.
    Indeed it's more of a reflection of the o
    Quality of the other players competing for the positions... for most countries at the time I suspect tassotti and Galli would have played a lot more games

    And scirea died in 1989... he retired from playing football in 1988

    He played his last game for Italy in 1986

    Baresi had 17 caps between 1982 and 1988 and became pretty much an automatic selection by 1988

    So "litterally" he didn't have to wait for scirea to die.

    That said your point about the strength in depth holds... just the literally part is literally wrong
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2018
  23. Feb 3, 2018
    #23

    harms Full Member Scout

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    The fact that Gullit is somehow underrated now have more to do with the competition. Van Basten's competition in an all-time debate is Ronaldo, Müller — pure number 9s. Gullit as an SS/right winger is "competing" with the likes of Pele, Maradona, Messi etc.

    Although I struggle to think of a player of a similar skillset and quality in football's history.
  24. Feb 3, 2018
    #24

    Balu Full Member

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    Scirea retired from the nationalteam after the World Cup in 1986 and from football in 1988. He wasn't playing anymore at the time of his tragic early death. There's really no need to bring it up when talking about Baresi's international career. It just sounds like sensationalism and neither of those two greats of the game deserves that.
  25. Feb 3, 2018
    #25

    Dan Smells of wee

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    I recall Gullit being the most expensive player when he moved to Milan.

    Van Basten was special player for me.
  26. Feb 3, 2018
    #26

    devilish Phil Neville's #1 fan

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    True. TBF the Serie A between the mid 80s and the mid 90s was ridiculously good and financially unsustainable. Nearly every single club in it had 1-2 WC player. At one point it bordered to the ridiculous were top players like Hagi and Maradona would leave top clubs like Barcelona and Real to join minion clubs like Brescia and Napoli. How ridiculous is that.

    The EPL lagged behind in everything mainly thanks to the suspension. Decent talent like Ian Rush and Des Walker failed big time in the Serie A while players who failed in the Serie A like Bergkamp and Ravanelli ended up top players in the EPL. Don't take me wrong the gap wasn't as big as one might think. Most was down to the Serie A impatience with its own talent. However, the gap was there and that league was by far the best in the world
  27. Feb 3, 2018
    #27

    devilish Phil Neville's #1 fan

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    well its beyond my time tbh (I was born but I was still very young at the time) so I might be wrong on that. My pops used to say that it was Scirea who kept Baresi out from the national team for so long. Whether he's wrong or not I don't know.
  28. Feb 4, 2018
    #28

    midnightmare Full Member

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    Grew up watching that Milan team and it still sends tingles down my spine. Marco van Basten for me was perhaps the greatest striker ever - close with Ronaldo (the Brazilian). Wasn’t called the Swan of Utrecht for nothing. His comfort on the ball in just about any and all situations was stunning and his repertoire was beyond any striker before or since.

    Rijkaard, Gullit, Baresi, Maldini etc. made that Milan team - as several have pointed out - the best in the world. MvB was the jewel in the crown though. I honestly think he also spoiled all that saw him because you’re always assessing strikers and thinking of how they fall short. MvB was pretty much the complete striker.

    I reckon the moment that could have gotten him to far greater heights in public memory was if he’d scored that penalty in 1992. Score, win the final and... Oh well.
  29. Feb 4, 2018
    #29

    Invictus Poster of the Year 2015 Staff

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    In terms of comparison of their tier of greatness...

    Van Basten ~ Müller ~ Ronaldo
    Rijkaard ~ Matthäus ~ Xavi
    Gullit ~ Laudrup

    Gullit suffers a bit in comparison with the other two because the competition for elite attacking midfielders is intense, even though they have different playing styles and Gullit was very unique - Maradona, Platini, Zico at the head of the queue followed by the likes of Zidane and Charlton and Gullit and Laudrup. In comparison with that, Rijkaard is THE greatest defensive midfielder in football history bar none (with only Desailly coming close as a pure destroyer, but critically - not as a footballer overall) as well as one of the greatest defensive stoppers of all time - a genuine reference point for midfielders with Matthäus (greatest box-to-box midfielder) and Xavi (greatest central midfield playmaker) - these are the players than all future midfielders in those specific roles will look up to. While Van Basten is at worst the 3rd greatest striker of all time behind Müller (goal per game at both club and international level and arguably the most decisive scorer of them all) and O Fenômeno (excluding the likes of Puskás and Eusébio - who were more forwards by nature).

    Wrt. the “especially van Basten” part and the type of striker he was, you could argue that if we were to the build the prototype for a Mourinho striker, it would be based on van Basten. To pick and choose individual traits from current strikers - imagine the strength and presence of Costa when he's tuned in, the technique of Ibrahimović, the tactical aptitude of Benzema in the early to mid 2010s where he was the perfect foil for Cristiano, the instinct of Icardi to isolate himself in opposition defensive zones and score from just 1 chance in a game (which was the norm in that period of Serie A), the sublime volleying technique of van Persie, the positioning and intelligence of Lewandowski, and the aerial prowess of Cristiano. Sounds a bit excessive or even ludicrous, but he was quite literally the most complete and effortless striker as regards his overall skill set. You could essentially put him in any setup against any opposition in the harshest of conditions, and he would deliver because of how diverse his repertoire of skills was, how hard he was willing to work for the team, and how composed and calculating he was between the ears. Second greatest Dutch footballer of all time behind only Cruyff - which is a testament to his greatness when you consider all the fantastic players they've had over the years.
  30. Feb 4, 2018
    #30

    midnightmare Full Member

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    Absolutely. The injuries ruined him and he still managed three Ballons d’Or.
  31. Feb 4, 2018
    #31

    Moby Dick

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    That's not very tasteful.
  32. Feb 4, 2018
    #32

    The Outsider Banned

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    When you hear those names I realise they are all Dutch so all though they did not win the World Cup it is good they won international honours with the Euro's in 1988.
  33. Feb 4, 2018
    #33

    bebeanderson Banned

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    That Milan was viewed as we view the Pep Barcelona team, basically. Dominated with a distinct style that seemed revolutionary. Like Xaviniesta, the dutch Milan players were always named together and represented a certain style.
  34. Feb 4, 2018
    #34

    Ajaxsuarez Full Member

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    Is it me or did Gullit lose the ball in pretty much every clip in that video?
  35. Feb 4, 2018
    #35

    devilish Phil Neville's #1 fan

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    True. My apologies
  36. Feb 4, 2018
    #36

    Infordin Full Member

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    AC Milan could have easily been the biggest club in the world right now if they capitalized on their huge global popularity and success.

    They were even more popular than Manchester United in the mid-2000's.

    They never worked on their brand like other clubs did, because they never needed to thanks to Berlusconi's money. Hence why as soon as Berlusconi stopped spending, they declined massively.
  37. Feb 4, 2018
    #37

    devilish Phil Neville's #1 fan

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    Its far more complex to that. Back in time an ambitious man known as eduardo agnelli came up with a clever marketing plan. His companies were located in turin and he thought that he should also buy a club there. His idea was to capitalise on the italian's obsession in football by making this relatively small club successful. In turn such success will reflect over his business as people will associate his club's success to the efficiency/high standards his business had.

    Berlusconi did practically the same with ac milan. He took a club which had passed better times, he threw millions in it and made it the top club in europe. Such success reflected well on himself and his business. Voters trusted him more as they thought that this guy could transform italy in the same way he did with milan

    Of course it was all for show and trophies were far more important to him then building a solid infrastructure for the club to thrive without him. Once he didnt need milan anymore he pulled the financial plug out

    The only difference between the agnelli and berlusca was that while the former knew that football wasn't their cup of tea, the latter saw himself as a football genius. Hence juventus was left in the hands of people who understood football while the latter were left to yes men.
  38. Feb 4, 2018
    #38

    giorno Full Member

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    Gullit was so handsome every woman in italy needed a smoke after seeing him

    Van Basten was so good every man in italy needed a snoke after seeing him play

    Rijkaard was pretty good too!
  39. Feb 4, 2018
    #39

    Mr.Ridiculous__ The name says it all

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    I am 23. Never saw the great Milan side. But based on YouTube clips, Gullit reminds me a bit of Pogba. Of course Pogba is not on his level (yet), but am I wrong in saying that they have similar skillsets?
  40. Feb 4, 2018
    #40

    giorno Full Member

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    Eeeeehhh...Gullit was a forward, could play as AM at a stretch, but mainly he combined great vision, skill and intelligence, with overwhelming physical gifts and an incredible team spirit/workrate/generosity

    Pogba is a different player. Now if by skillset you mean Gullit had a tremendous turn of pace, dribbling, and the ability to execute any kind of pass, combined with incredible strenght, then sure...

    He played nothing like Pogba though