Cruyff a 'unique' figure in football - Blatter

Sepp Blatter (AFP)
Sepp Blatter (AFP)

Lausanne - Johan Cruyff was a "unique" figure in world football, former FIFA president Sepp Blatter told AFP after the death Thursday of the Dutch legend from lung cancer at the age of 68.

"Johan Cruyff gave football a unique touch that some try to copy, like the current Bayern Munich coach (Pep Guardiola) who as a player at Barcelona was influenced by Cruyff's game," said Blatter, who is serving a six-year ban from all football activities over a suspect $2 million dollar payment to UEFA boss Michel Platini.

"I'm very moved. He was an extraordinary personality who, along with Rinus Michels, kicked off total football.

"Football will miss Cruyff."

Blatter added: "He was an extraordinary person in the sense that he wasn't one of those people you can compare to in current football.

"He had an idea in his head, he was tenacious and and he succeeded in taking along those with whom he played because he was carrying through his ideas to the end.

"I knew him as a player and again as a Barcelona coach. We had good contacts. He was a man who had a special aura, even at times a little cold. Then we worked together for his foundation which helps handicapped and deprived children."

Blatter said he was "sad that football has lost such a person".

Voting Booth
What is your favourite sport to watch on TV?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
Rugby
42% - 7827 votes
Cricket
11% - 1969 votes
Football
19% - 3583 votes
Athletics
3% - 464 votes
Boxing
1% - 172 votes
Cycling
2% - 442 votes
Golf
5% - 915 votes
Motorsport
8% - 1550 votes
Tennis
3% - 616 votes
Water sports
1% - 168 votes
American sports
1% - 217 votes
MMA / WWE / UFC
3% - 572 votes
Vote