The Dutch player was the main architect of the first Barça title in the top European competition in 1992.
No follower of Barcelona you can forget the powerful throw of lack of Ronald Koeman at Wembley before Sampdoria. It was May 20, 1992. A date remembered by Barcelona fans for signifying the first Champions (at that time called the European Cup) and goodbye to fears in the top European competition.
Just as important was the Dutchman’s shot as the presence of another Dutchman on the bench. And it is that the arrival of Johan Cruyff to the bench of the culé team was essential, equal or more than it had meant his debut as a culé player.
Cruyff managed to transmit to the club that competitive gene that he always wore, as a winner -even if the World Cup resisted him-, as a winner. A word that was not used so often in the Barcelona vocabulary, accustomed to national titles, to a lesser extent than today, and almost devoid of continental titles, especially in the Champions League, a habitat where Real had moved perfectly well Madrid, at least at the beginning of the tournament.
Barcelona’s relationship with the European Cup was plagued by disagreements that had reached their maximum expression with the Berne final against Benfica (1961), where the square posts made Barça despair, and with the meeting in Seville against Steaua (1986 ), where a fateful penalty shoot-out ended up increasing this divorce between Barcelona and Orejona.
“I think Koeman’s goal is the most watched in the history of Barcelona, luckily Salinas did not mark it,” Rexach commented at the celebrations for the 25th anniversary of the conquest of the championship.
“An unforgettable place, an unforgettable match, an unforgettable goal. That it was Barça’s first European Cup made it even more unforgettable. The first is always special and Barça had a huge illusion to achieve it, ”Koeman himself said about the match.
Now, 28 years later, Koeman takes the reins of Barcelona as their coach, and will seek, like Cruyff, to make history both as a player and on the bench.
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