Michael Laudrup A Football Player

Published by Jan Heaney on

Michael Laudrup   A Football Player

A FOOTBALL PLAYER We’ve travelled 1,300 kilometres to
see Barcelona win the championship – – and to see Laudrup play. We’ve come because Laudrup
is a great football player. He’s a great personality,
on the pitch as well as off. He’s a wonderful player with
golden feet. He’s number one! – He’s a poet.
– He’s second to none. June 20th 1993. F.C. Barcelona played at home
against Real Sociedad – – in the last game of the season.
The championship was at stake. Barcelona were one point
behind Real Madrid, – – who were playing away
against Tenerife. The pressure on the players had
been enormous for the past weeks. F.C. Barcelona were still hoping to
win the third championship in a row. They would make football history
if they did. Michael Laudrup was at the height
of his football career. He had lived up to
Johan Cruyff’s huge expectations. He was the pivotal player in the
champions’ sweeping style of play. He was tremendously popular, and
highly respected by his colleagues – – as the best foreign player in Spain
and one of the best in Europe. But Barcelona’s game didn’t seem
to come together on the night. Everybody knew that the decision
would take place in the Atlantic. That they needed help from Tenerife
to win the championship. It brought a distracted mood
to the Nou Camp. The crowd were listening
to their transistor radios, – – only half watching the game. After 11 minutes there was relief.
Tenerife went 1-0 up against Real. As if he had been spurred on by this,
Stoichkov made it 1-0 for Barcelona. Suddenly the championship
was within reach. Now it was just a matter
of passing the time. Barcelona hung on to the ball,
nurturing their 1-0 lead. The tension lifted when Tenerife
made it 2-0 on 42 minutes. Laudrup got a standing ovation when
he came off 15 minutes from time. No one deserves more credit for
Barcelona’s triumph than Johan Cruyff. Though often the butt
of criticism and intrigue, – – he has stuck to his ways
and to his ideas about football. The results confiirm his vision. A radio reporter lets Laudrup listen
to the end of the Tenerife game. Can I have your shirt? The next day the team visits
Basilica de la Mercé – – to give thanks
to the patron saint of the city. It’s part of the traditions of the club,
which is the pride of Barcelona. The players turn up for training
at the Nou Camp at 10:30 a.m. They start by loosening their muscles
before they train with the ball. Tough training is rare. The foundation for their fitness was
laid in a training camp in Holland. Sometimes training takes place
on a smaller training fiield. But it’s usually on the well-kept
grass of the Nou Camp. Nou Camp is one of the most
beautiful places in football. The Catalan cathedral.
A legendary arena. It has a capacity crowd of 120,000. Like a volcanic crater Nou Camp
stands right in the heart of the city. For evening games
the white floodlights come on – – and expose every moment
mercilessly, – – causing the crowd
to breathe as one. Here the champions’
star names meet every day: Zubizarreta, Ferrer, Eusebio,
Koeman, Nadal, Bakero, – – Salinas, Goikoetxea, Stoichkov,
Laudrup, Witschge, – – Amor, Beguiristáin, Alexanco. Johan Cruyff, a ball constantly
under his arm or at his feet, – – with his assistants,
Carlos Rexach and Tonny Bruins. I’m proud of the fact that I’ve been
part of the triumphs from the start. When I came to Juventus, they’d
already won just about everything. At Barcelona I feel I was
part of it from the beginning. It’s something
people will remember. When history is written, Cruyff’s
team will certainly be remembered. I enjoy playing here
much more than in Italy. Before I came here I never
thought that it was possible – – to enjoy playing football. Not many managers allow certain
players to play all over the pitch. I guess Cruyff realised
that I’m at my best like that. Barcelona’s build-up
is all about Laudrup. He creates the openings,
he sets the game up. Laudrup provides
the creative element, – – which often is wonderful to watch
in its clarity and beauty. His sudden actions
can turn a game around in a moment. When he’s inspired, he creates one
amazing moment after another. When he’s not at his best,
the game falls apart. Laudrup is a visionary player,
with unique skills. His syncopated runs, his timing,
his balance on the ball, – – his strategic moves off the ball,
his changes of pace, – – his sharp eye for chances,
the accuracy of his passing. Laudrup is at his very best. He has matured as a player
here at Barcelona. He marshals his skills supremely. It is a huge compliment
when people say I make it look easy. It has been a problem for me too. Not so much in Barcelona, because I’m
successful, but in Italy they said: “The reason our expectations
are so high is – – that it looks like you can
score single-handed.” It must be what I exude,
or the way I move or whatever. Of course you can’t just go past
7-8 opponents and score a goal. Maybe in the under-elevens,
but not at this level. The football world has great respect
for Michael Laudrup’s play. Other great players express their
admiration. They are fond of him. He was voted the best foreign player
in Spain two years in a row. He is an unselfiish player.
And always creative. The training is marked
by a striking element of play. A common routine is to pass the ball
quickly in a circle of players. One player stands in the middle
and has to take the ball. A mistake puts you in the middle. They practise reflexes, speed
and precision in a small area. They achieve perfection through play. The ball must be kept in play.
No breaks. Intense concentration. Cruyff cultivates
the playful qualities of the game. The players are divided into three
groups. Laudrup’s is always the same: Bakero, Koeman, Stoichkov,
Beguiristáin, Zubizarreta, – – Witschge, Alexanco
and Cruyff himself. We practise one-touch passing
and position play so much, – – because it’s the basis,
the foundation of the way we play. People often think
that it’s just for fun. But it’s the foundation
of our entire playing style. Michael Laudrup is an extraordinary
person and a brilliant player. We consider him one of the fiive to
six best players of the past ten years. We have no rehearsed patterns, but
we’ve scored many goals like this: I play centre forward, drop back
to get the ball and play it wide – – to Beguiristáin or Stoichkov, who
set up Bakero or another midfielder. I lost count of how many goals
we’ve scored this way in four years. It’s surprising that
the other teams still allow it. They haven’t worked out… They still haven’t sussed that
combination out. But that’s OK. Against Sevilla. Laudrup has the ball
in midfield and looks up. Sets up a one-two with Stoichkov
and finishes coolly. Against Valencia.
Laudrup gets a cross from the right – – and tries a volley. In the same game.
Bakero passes, Laudrup scores. Bakero to Laudrup,
who puts it in an empty goal. Against Real Madrid : Stoichkov’s
pass is picked up by a defender. But Laudrup steals it and shoots
through the legs of the goalkeeper. Against Real Madrid. A pass to Goikoetxea.
An accurate cross. And Laudrup scores with a volley. Goikoetxea crosses.
Laudrup scores. Goikoetxea. And Laudrup. Training always starts off with
Cruyff’s so-called morning prayer, – – his comments and thoughts,
always out of earshot of the press. Cruyff gives everyone leeway.
But there’s a lot of discipline. I know many people say : “Barcelona always just attacks.”
But we’re very disciplined. Eight or nine players
have fiixed positions. There are one or two,
who are allowed to switch, like me. But obviously
when you have more freedom, – – you have more responsibility.
People make the mistake of saying: “He can do as he pleases.”
But the demands are redoubled. Sometimes it’s easier to have
a fixed position as a left winger. When you get the ball,
you know what to do. You can play well or badly,
but you can’t go wrong. Michael Laudrup is a player
who often uses his intuition. He’s a player who can decide a game
in a fraction of a second. The interesting thing is
that he also has personality, – – on the pitch and off it. He is one of those rare players
in the world of football, – – who understands his opponents
and respects them. If you ask Laudrup after a game – – whether his side made a mistake
and he can see that it was, – – then he will admit the mistake. That’s why he is so special.
And a great personality. If I am to play well, all my team
has to do is get a lot of possession. We always do, so I may be
expected to play well in every game. That I don’t always do so
may be my fault – – or due to other factors. The foundations for playing well
are there in 95% of all games. There are always matches in which
we don’t have the ball that much. But in 95%% of all games
we have the ball 75% of the time. Against Sevilla.
Ferrer passes to Beguiristáin. Beguiristáin to Laudrup. Laudrup
cuts inside and finds Bakero, – – who scores. Against Real Madrid :
Koeman. Amor. Laudrup. Laudrup to Beguiristáin…
who does not score. Against Real Madrid :
Ferrer. Laudrup. Laudrup sees Amor… And he scores. Against La Coruña:
Beguiristáin into the centre. Laudrup gets the ball.
He waits… … and seeks out Stoichkov,
who doesn’t score. Against La Coruña :
Laudrup receives the ball. Laudrup plays it to Beguiristáin… … who loses possession. Against La Coruña : Laudrup gets the ball. Pushes it out to Amor,
who scores. Laudrup. Amor. Goal. In the past I used to have a go
at dribbling eight times out of ten. Not for its own sake, but because
I felt it was my job on the team. Now I try to spread it out. If you keep doing it, your opponent
will know what you’re going to do. It’s better to keep passing until
you can surprise him with a dribble. Of course, with all the distinctions
I got in the past year, – – I get someone sticking to me
all the time. It doesn’t make it any easier.
So I have to play the way I do. If I dribble every time,
I just get hacked down. Michael Laudrup
is the architect of football. Faster and faster. You have to control the ball,
look up and pass. Another of Cruyff’s games
is all about keeping possession. Again it’s mainly about quick passing. Two teams play against each other
on a small field. Cruyff and assistant manager Rexach
take part as a kind of jokers, – – who can always be played
by the team that’s on the ball. The players don’t run much,
but pass the ball on quickly. As in many of Barcelona’s games,
it’s proof of the football adage: “Let the ball do the work.” What makes playing good is
that there’s a touch of seriousness. It’s vital to this sophisticated game
with its simple, tough rules, – – to keep going at full tilt
for a long time, – – without pause,
without losing focus. Cruyff wants to keep his players
from getting bored. Training shouldn’t get too tough.
The players are already in shape. Here speed, precision, reflexes
and ball control are honed. The training is based on
the slightly arrogant concept – – that Barcelona will mostly be
playing in the opposing half. It’s no coincidence that there
is something playful and artistic – – about the way Barcelona
takes defences apart. Sometimes it’s fun,
sometimes it’s tough. The reason is simply – – that we nearly always
have 75% possession, – – with 20 players in the same half. So we have to be able to play
our short game very quickly. Otherwise it’s impossible
to get through the tight defences. There’s a lot to take into account
when you play a through pass. Is your team mate quick?
Is he off-side? Is the pitch fast?
Is there a tailwind or not? You have to know these things in
advance when you play through balls. Against Atletico : Laudrup gets the ball. He hangs on to it,
draws the defenders towards him – – and plays a through pass
to Beguiristáin. Against Atletico :
Laudrup gets the ball and plays Amor. Laudrup. Amor. Bakero. Against La Coruña :
Barcelona build up an attack. Laudrup controls the ball
and plays a poor pass… … and wins the ball back
with his heel. Against Real Madrid : Laudrup on the ball.
And he lifts it to Eusebio. F.C. Barcelona is one of the
wealthiest clubs in the world. It has approximately
100,000 members. The members are entitled to buy
a season ticket for the home games. Other important sources of income
are the billboards at the Nou Camp – – and not least the revenue
from TV rights. F.C. Barcelona’s wealth is obvious
by not being obvious. The club prides itself on being
the only major club in the world – – that has not sold the most
attractive advertising space of all : The players’ jerseys. Becoming a member of Barça
is not easy. It’s not uncommon to be
on a waiting list for 15 years. So it’s a popular christening present
to have one’s name put down. The average age
among members is 44. A more laid-back home crowd
than at other clubs. F.C. Barcelona is a major political
and social factor, – – the pride of Catalonia. There are several fan clubs
all over the country called peñas, – – where the Barça players
are worshipped like saints. Barcelona plays Sevilla
at the Nou Camp on June 6th. It’s a key game in the
final stages of the competition. Barça must win, or all hope of
retaining the championship is lost. Michael Laudrup plays the leading
role in Cruyff’s vision of football. But Laudrup does not
stick to the script. He’s one of those rare players who
can turn a game around in a moment. He is a creative force
of outstanding class. He adds a touch of the unpredictable,
of the imagination to the team. He is a football poet. The 2-1 win
is the most important thing. With only two games to go
that’s the main thing. After all,
it’s the result that counts. The second half kicks off.
Sevilla on the ball. Juan Carlos wins it.
Beguiristáin. Koeman. Juan Carlos. Amor.
Laudrup. Sets up a one-two with Nadal
and then with Bakero. Beguiristáin picks it up, – – shoots, and Laudrup scores. Laudrup. Bakero. Laudrup. Bakero. Beguiristáin. Beguiristáin shoots,
Laudrup scores. Michael Laudrup has been playing
abroad since 1983. His success on the Danish national
team is the root of his career. He made his
international debut at 18. His big breakthrough came in the
run-up to the World Cup in 1985, – – fiirst in the qualifier against the
Soviet Union on June 5th, – – when Denmark
got a sensational 4-2 win. Laudrup, playing with number 11,
scored two fantastic goals. Elkjær wins the ball.
Passes to Laudrup, – – who cuts inside and scores. Elkjær. Laudrup. Laudrup, Arnesen, Lerby, Olsen, Busk. Lerby to Laudrup. Who scores with a flat shot. Laudrup, number 1 1,… … who slots it into the corner. At the World Cup in Mexico,
the Uruguay game was the highlight. Lerby to Laudrup. He rounds the goalkeeper
and scores from an acute angle. Laudrup, round the outside,
around the goalkeeper. In 1988 Denmark played
a great game against Brazil – – in DBU’s jubilee tournament. Laudrup dribbles to the centre. He plays a one-two with Elkjær
and scores. An attack on the right-hand side.
Flemming Povlsen. And an inch-perfect cross
to Laudrup’s head. Flemming Povlsen
goes past a Brazilian… … and crosses to Laudrup. August 25th 1993,
Parken, Copenhagen. On this summer night Michael Laudrup
returned to the national team – – after two years and nine months
of voluntary absence. It would be an understatement to say
that he got a good reception. The game against Lithuania: Laudrup wins the ball
and heads for the goal line. Crosses it. Brian Laudrup with
a touch, and Lars Olsen scores. Laudrup. Laudrup. Olsen. Michael Laudrup takes a free kick.
He must be accurate, – – because an opening
will be hard to fiind. And Brian Laudrup scores. Michael Laudrup
waiting for the right moment. He pushes it to Brian Laudrup. Try to take it away from Daddy. Come here, Mads.
Try to take it from Daddy. Take it.
Good boy! Michael Laudrup’s sons, Mads
and Andreas, can run with the ball, – – kick it, fall over and keep going. But how soon can one spot
footballing talent? Michael and Brian’s unusual flair
was spotted at a very early age. But then,
their father taught them a lot. As we’ve seen at the Nou Camp,
playing with the ball is a start. Michael Laudrup’s talent was
plain to see at the age of 14. As the son
of football player Finn Laudrup, – – he had reconciled himself to
a professional career early on. His younger brother, Brian,
also had this innate football talent – – that shone from the outset. In 1982 he moved from KB to Brøndby.
After that, he never looked back. He earned his first cap at 18. The big foreign clubs
had already spotted him. Juventus paid millions
to Brøndby to get him. From 1983 to 1985
he played at Lazio, – – then Juventus put his talent
to use from 1985 to 1989. Here he played together
with Michel Platini, who said: “He’s one of the greatest talents
of all time.” Meanwhile Johan Cruyff was
building a team to suit his ideas – – for Catalonian giants
F.C. Barcelona. He chose Michael Laudrup
for a central role. And here Laudrup’s talent
truly unfolded itself. F.C. Barcelona
went from triumph to triumph. Laudrup has his share of the credit
for these great results. If you get a bad start, you have
to get right back to basics – – and start with simple passes. If you start badly, you can’t expect
to play brilliant passes suddenly. They will come when things are going
smoothly for you and the team. It’s rare to see a bad team with one
player playing 3-4 brilliant passes. A right winger or a left back
has a certain function. To confuse our opponents, we
sometimes switch 4-5 positions. It makes things chaotic for the other
team, but also for us sometimes. When you know that you have to change
position 5 minutes into the game, – – it may be a bit tougher
to get off to a good start. I’ve never had a serious injury,
touch wood. I’ve seen many serious injuries,
but only a few of them, – – the ones where a player falls
down and breaks something… Whenever a knee
or a cruciate ligament is injured, – – it’s always someone
who falls awkwardly during training. People who get locked up and fall
before they get their balance. Very few serious injuries – – have been caused
by hard defenders. If you learn how to fall properly,
you seldom get a serious injury. Maybe a collarbone,
but that’s not too serious. The worst is when you have
your back to your opponent – – and he hits your Achilles tendon
with his studs. You should avoid turning your back.
That’s what I mean about tactics. I always try to position myself
so I’m facing sideways. So I can see my team mates with one
eye and the opponent with the other. Then these things rarely happen. Real Madrid is the arch-enemy. The rivalry between the royal club
and the pride of Catalonia – – has been going on for decades. It’s an extreme reflection – – of the antagonism
between the nation’s capital – – and the strong sense
of independence in Catalonia. Not only do the Catalonians have
their own language and culture. They also have a football team
worthy of their self-awareness. A team which has achieved the
highest: to win the European Cup. In that sense they’ve replaced Real
Madrid with its proud traditions. I have developed more
of a temper in the past few years. When Brian and I were small,
we got hysterical if we lost. We’d shout at the referee,
our team mates, whatever. We were told that this
was not done in Denmark. So Brian and I kind of turned around. We’ve always been laid-back. In Italy they said:
“He’s got no temperament.” With age I’ve become
more temperamental. I never bawl my team mates out. It’s easy to say afterwards,
“You should have done this or that.” It’s about helping beforehand. Then,
if they don’t do it, you can scold. A lot of players look at the ball,
then look up, but then it’s too late. You have to know your options
before you get the ball. It’s different with each player.
One is quick, the other a bit slower. I don’t score that many goals. But in the past three years
at Barcelona I’ve averaged 15. I think that’s quite good. Michael Laudrup is one of those
treasures Barcelona has. He is one of the few excuses – – us lovers of football artistry have
for loving this sport. On the last match day Real Madrid
played away at Tenerife, – – while Barcelona had a home game
against Real Sociedad. Barcelona still had a chance. Maybe they could repeat
their feat from last year – – and overtake Madrid in the
fiinal minutes of the competition. The hope was there. And as we know,
it was made good. F.C. Barcelona did win
the championship again. The semi-final of the cup,
June 16th, only five days earlier. It was of secondary importance
to both sides. It’s always alluring to win both
the championship and the cup. Barcelona could take comfort
if they didn’t overtake Madrid, – – by winning the cup. The game was dramatic,
tough and occasionally well played. The championship was not at stake.
But one felt – – that it was yet another
clash of the titans. No one spared himself although the
biggest game of the year was to come. They tried to grab the initiative. Real Madrid did that best
in the fiirst half, winning it 1-0. After the break Barcelona pushed
Real Madrid back into their half. Michael Laudrup looked fiired up.
He was always in the thick of things. He made challenges
and started attack upon attack. But the Barcelona players
were unlucky with their finishes. A few minutes from time
Michael Laudrup got a chance – – and took it. He made it 1-2,
which was the final score. Right now we’re disappointed. But luckily we have
another game three days from now. Then we’ll see.
We have to win that game. – Could you lose?
– I don’t think so. We’re playing at home against a team
that has nothing to play for. To my mind, Laudrup is
the epitome of elegance. He turns football into art. Subtitles:
SDI Media Denmark


Gle Cas · October 20, 2016 at 9:02 pm

Thank you for this 🙂 A true legend

10pelusita · December 8, 2016 at 10:54 am


tano shehu · February 7, 2017 at 5:27 pm

michelino laudrup….una legenda [email protected] carriera lazio juve barcelona real madrid….super [email protected]

tano shehu · February 9, 2017 at 10:27 am

era un vero e proprio [email protected] stato sempre uno dei migliori giocatori in circolazione …tecnicamente stratosferico….forza lazio 1900

NoobFocus • · February 19, 2017 at 3:05 pm

Fottball player? Is football player

johan cruijff · January 10, 2018 at 8:56 pm

That was a great documentary… I'm so glad it had England subtitles haha… thanks for the upload 👍

Gagasan Melayu Raya · February 25, 2018 at 10:42 am

"… and his ENJOYMENT of playing the game under Johan Cruyff." Hmmm

Andrew · March 3, 2018 at 9:33 pm

a fabulous film

reßoot · March 23, 2018 at 1:40 am

I've seen that movie so many times when I was a teenager. But it was so weird that it was Jørgen Leth that made the voice-over. He was and still commentary Tour de France on danish national TV.. He as poetic with words as Michael Laudrup was as a footballer!

Tbonyandsteak · June 23, 2018 at 12:17 pm

What was it?
5 years in Barcelona and 5 championships. Then he changed to Madrid and they won the championship

Conald Deronne · January 5, 2019 at 5:59 am


Retro Lover · January 17, 2019 at 4:31 pm

Danish players and Danish national team was one off the best teams in the 90s along with: France, Brazil, Argentina, Croatia, Bulgaria, Germany etc. They always gave trouble to big teams. Now I dont know what happened to danish football but it seems to me they dont have it anymore. Its like they slowed down a bit. This generation they have now isnt even up to knee with the Schmeichel and Laudrup brothers generation. Frankly I dont see them winning trophies anytime soon which is a shame because change in football would be needed for teams like Denmark and other smaller teams winning and dominating. I think we are all tired of Brazil south american countries winning the wc…

Erling Andersen · March 26, 2019 at 3:25 am

what made him great was his passing– sometimes over hafl the plane and the greatest player of all time as a maneger

Anton & Thomas Friis · April 18, 2019 at 3:05 pm

Michael Laudrup played 7 years in Spain…. From 1989 – 1996 – These are the titles he won during this period.
– Messi has stated : “I fully understand why Michael Laudrup is considered one of the best players in Barcelona’s history..”

1990 : La Liga Cup Winner (Barcelona)
1991 : La Liga Champion (Barcelona)
1992 : La Liga Champion (Barcelona)
1992 : EuroCup Champion (Barcelona)
1992 : Player of the year Spain
1993 : La Liga Champion (Barcelona)
1993 : Player of the year Spain
1994 : La Liga Champion (Barcelona)
1995 : La Liga Champion (Real Madrid)

Peter Pedersen · May 4, 2019 at 8:23 pm

Wtf sound and picture is not in sync

Nordjyden Fra Vendsyssel · May 27, 2019 at 6:20 am

er det ikke Jørgen Leth der snakker ind over?

TITUS 3V5 · June 13, 2019 at 7:38 am

Thnx God bless

o o · August 20, 2019 at 11:47 pm

real maestro. for me same level as Maradona

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