Dick van Dijk
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Van Dijk in 1969
|Full name||Dirk Wouter Johannes van Dijk|
|Date of birth||15 February 1946|
|Place of birth||Gouda, Netherlands|
|Date of death||8 July 1997(aged 51)|
|Place of death||Nice, France|
|Height||1.86 m (6 ft 1 in)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 14 December 2006.
† Appearances (Goals).
Dick van Dijk (15 February 1946 – 8 July 1997) was a Dutch footballer who played for FC Twente and Ajax Amsterdam. He was a member of Ajax' European Cup victory in 1971. He earned seven caps for the Netherlands national football team.
Dick van Dijk grew up in Gouda and Balde foot in his youth in the local amateurvereniging ONA. When he was sixteen, he met coach Hans Croon of SVV, with whom he played in the Second division. Van Dijk was topscorer for the club in 1966 and won promotion with his club to the First Division. He was invited to the Dutch youth team and the Dutch military team. The scoring ability of the young star attracted the interest of FC Twente, but the asking price of 200,000 guilders was too much. A less impressive season ensured that the transfer fee a year later had dropped to 70,000 guilders, with Van Dijk joining FC Twente in the summer of 1967.
At Twente, Van Dijk made a promising start with seven goals in five matches. He was a strong aanvalsduo with Theo Pahlplatz. The arrival of Van Dijk provided a positive impact to FC Twente, the young team ended in part thanks to the 22 goals he scored in his first season in a creditable eighth place. The following year was even better. Twente did in the long struggle for the national championship and Van Dijk was topscorer with 30 goals in the Premier League. Legendary is the home match against Ajax on 3 November 1968. Twente won 5–1 and Van Dijk scored three goals. It is believed that this contest with the interest of Ajax in Van Dijk was finally awakened. The transition was likely well before the end of the season and already an open secret in June 1969 it became clear that the peak for a transfer fee of 750,000 guilders moved to Amsterdam. Meanwhile had Van Dijk on 26 March 1969 as international made his debut in a match of the Dutch national team against Luxembourg. Orange won 4–0 and Van Dijk scored once.
While Van Dijk at Twente is the absolute star was at Ajax he was not more than one of the sixteen selected and he had to fight for a spot in its basic form. It made him a different, more complete footballer, who learned to defend. In his first season he scored 23 goals in 32 matches. Although he is in his second season at Ajax no longer in the weekly basis was, he still scored 18 goals in 29 matches. In the final of the Europa Cup I on 1 June 1971 against Panathinaikos was Van Dijk in the base. Already after five minutes he scored with his head. Ajax would win the match 2–0.
On 10 October 1971 Van Dijk played its seventh and final international match against East Germany. After third season at Ajax, where he was mainly reserve, Van Dijk departed in 1972 to OGC Nice in France. There he scored frequently. The team was in season 1972/1973 months to headline in the French league and a year later won a remarkable result in the first round of the UEFA Cup by FC Barcelona coach Rinus Michels and Johan Cruijff player off. In 1974 verkaste Van Dijk to Real Murcia in Spain. A year later he finished his football career. He went back to Nice where he was a broker. He was living in the nearby Saint-Paul-de-Vence.
In 1997 he died suddenly at 51 years of age. During a medical examination in a hospital, he ran a bacterial infection to the heart valves, which was fatal to him. In memory was on 12 October 1997 organized a benefit match between ONA from Gouda and the Ajax of the Europe Cup I-finals from 1971.