Former Dutch international Ruud Geels, winner of the European Cup with Feyenoord Rotterdam in 1970 before becoming one of the top scorers in the history of Ajax Amsterdam, has died at the age of 75, the Amsterdam club announced on Saturday .
“He always scored, but was never really in the forefront,” greeted Ajax in a press release.
Geels had 20 caps with the Oranje between 1974 and 1981. He signed with Ajax after participating in the 1974 World Cup in Germany, where the Netherlands were finalists but where he did not play a single match. He played with Ajax, recalls the club, 166 matches and scored 153 goals from 1974 to 1978. He was crowned champion of the Netherlands twice during his career, in 1977 with Ajax, eight years after having been with Feyenoord.
Born in Haarlem near Amsterdam, Geels took his first steps in professional football at Telstar, before joining Feyenoord. After his time at the Rotterdam club, he played for the Go Ahead Eagles and Club Bruges - where he was crowned Belgian champion in 1973 - before arriving in 1974 at Ajax.
This striker, an excellent leading player, finished top scorer in the Eredivisie four times in a row from 1975 to 1978, and top scorer in the UEFA Cup during the 1975/1976 season. The man who also wore the jerseys of the Dutch clubs Sparta Amsterdam, PSV Eindhoven, Breda, and the Belgian Anderlecht, ended his career in 1984, at the age of 35.