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Willem "Wim" van Hanegem (Dutch pronunciation: [ˈʋɪləm ˈʋɪm vɑn ˈɦaːnəɣɛm]; born 20 February 1944) is a Dutch former football midfielder and coach born in Breskens, Zeeland. In a playing career spanning over 20 years he won several domestic honours in the Netherlands, as well as a European Cup and a UEFA trophy, all with Feyenoord. He was also a finalist in the 1974 FIFA World Cup. As a manager, he won the league and cup with Feyenoord and spent a period as the Dutch national team's assistant coach. His most recent job as manager was for FC Utrecht, from 2007 to 2008.

Willem van Hanegem
Willem van Hanegem 1978c.jpg
Willem van Hanegem in 1978
Personal information
Full name Willem van Hanegem
Date of birth (1944-02-20) 20 February 1944 (age 75)
Place of birth Breskens, Netherlands
Height 1.85 m (6 ft 1 in)
Playing position Central Midfielder
Youth career
Velox SC
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1962–1966 Velox SC 109 (39)
1966–1968 Xerxes 68 (32)
1968–1976 Feyenoord 247 (88)
1976–1979 AZ'67 75 (10)
1979 Chicago Sting 27 (6)
1979–1981 FC Utrecht 54 (3)
1981–1983 Feyenoord 51 (2)
National team
1968–1979[1] Netherlands 52 (6)
Teams managed
1990–1992 USV Holland
1990–1991 FC Wageningen
1992–1995 Feyenoord
1995–1996 Al-Hilal
1997–1999 AZ
2001 Sparta Rotterdam
2007–2008 FC Utrecht
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 6 June 2007
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 6 June 2007

Playing careerEdit

Van Hanegem played for Velox SC, Xerxes/DHC, Feyenoord, AZ'67, Chicago Sting, FC Utrecht and, finally, Feyenoord once again.

Style of playEdit

In the Netherlands he is widely considered as one of the best Dutch football players in history. He was renowned for his tactical insight and was well known for his fantastic passing range and his ability with the ball at his feet. Both his way of sprinting (he had bandy legs), and his skill to give the ball a curve (achieved by striking the ball with the outside of his left foot) gave him the nickname De Kromme (The Crooked). Whilst being primarily renowned for the technical part of his game, he was also highly capable in the defensive part of his game, being a good tackler and not afraid to go into physical challenges. His primary weakness was his lack of pace.[2]

Coaching careerEdit

After retiring as a player, Van Hanegem joined Feyenoord as assistant manager in 1983 and stayed in the post until 1986. He then joined FC Utrecht as assistant, before moving to FC Wageningen. He returned to Feyenoord as manager in 1992, winning the league in 1993 and the Dutch Cup in 1994 and 1995.

In 1995, he had a spell as manager with Saudi Arabian club Al-Hilal, then took the post at AZ'67 in 1997. He joined Sparta Rotterdam in 2001. His stay was short-lived, and afterwards he became assistant manager of the Dutch national side. He was appointed manager of FC Utrecht in July 2007 and was fired on 23 December 2008.

Personal lifeEdit

Van Hanegem was known for rough, passionate play against German sides (before the 1974 final, he exhorted the Dutch side to "stuff the Germans").[3] "I don't like Germans. Everytime I played against German players, I had a problem because of the war."[4]

In the summer of 1944 the German 15th army was fleeing northward from Calais to the Netherlands. On 11 September the Allies bombed the Wehrmacht near the ferry terminal at Breskens. Citizens had fled the town but Lo and Izaak van Hanegem, Willem's father and older brother, went back to get supplies. They hid in a shelter, which was hit. Both died. Van Hanegem later lost a brother and a sister to the war.[4] His hatred was summed up after the 1974 final, "I didn't give a damn as long as we humiliated them. They murdered my father, sister and two brothers. I am full of angst. I hate them." After the game (with Germany winning 2–1) Van Hanegem left the field in tears.[5]

In later years, however, Van Hanegem used a more conciliatory tone, when commenting on the war.

Willem's son, Willem van Hanegem jr., is an international electronic dance music artist and DJ. Together with Ward van der Harst he forms DJ/producer duo W&W which is very well known in the EDM scene.


Van Hanegem in 2008


With Feyenoord:



  • Winner – 1968–69

European Cup

Intercontinental Cup


With AZ'67


  • Winner – 1977–78

With the Dutch national team:

FIFA World Cup

European Football Championship

  • Third place – 1976


With Feyenoord:



  • Winner – 1993–94, 1994–95

Individual HonoursEdit


Dutch Footballer of the Year

  • Winner – 1971[6]


  1. ^ "Willem van Hanegem - International Appearances". The Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation.
  2. ^
  3. ^ FourFourTwo, 50 Greatest World Cup Moments, July 2006
  4. ^ a b Winner, D. Brilliant Orange. Bloomsbury, 2000.
  5. ^ Seddon, P. The World Cup's Strangest Moments. Robson Books, 2005.
  6. ^ "Het vrije volk : democratisch-socialistisch dagblad". Retrieved 6 April 2015.

External linksEdit