George Best: produced an outstanding display to help Northern Ireland to a famous 2-2 draw in Rotterdam against a gifted Netherlands side. Photograph: Getty Images

You’ve got to love Danny Blanchflower. You have really got to love Danny Blanchflower. When it was all over, when the four goals had been scored and (...)

Pat Jennings: He [Pochettino] has a great team around him and with the chairman they’ve done an unbelievable job. Hopefully we can push on – win the Champions League, get top four.”  Photograph:  Catherine Ivill/Getty Images

Pat Jennings is in his Tottenham Hotspur tracksuit. He is walking in from training. It is a Friday morning and he has just had his weekly session with(...)

Ajax sporting director Marc Overmars  and chief executive Edwin van der Sar celebrate the club’s victory  over Real Madrid at the Santiago Bernabéu on Tuesday night. Photograph: David Ramos/Getty Images

Last summer, seven of Ajax’s brightest stars were summoned to a room at the Dutch club’s training facility. Edwin van der Sar, the goalkeeper-turned-c(...)

The Tartan Army get behind their team in  Argentina. Photograph: Allsport UK/Allsport

“My name is Ally MacLeod, and I am a born winner!” And we all know how this story pans out. Let’s cut the man some slack, though, for he wasn’t quite(...)

 East Kilbride captain Barry Russell celebrates with the players and staff with beer presented by Ajax club officials after winning the 27th consecutive game against BSC Glasgow FC. Photo: Mark Runnacles/Getty Images

Ajax have presented East Kilbride with 27 crates of beer after the Scottish Lowland League team surpassed the Dutch club’s world record for consecutiv(...)

Over the years I’d pluck a name from the mind’s eye to describe a young player. We all do. Once in a blue moon I’d nudge Noel O’Reilly, my late partner in crime, and nod towards a tall, languid boy with every skill under the sun, “bit of Cruyff about him .  . .”

Up until 1974 Ireland never feared Holland. We were always expected to beat them. But that World Cup changed perceptions. Back then European teams we(...)

Johan Cruyff has died aged 68. Photograph: Getty

It’s the defining image of the 1974 World Cup; the defining image of the great Dutch team of the 70s; the defining image of one of the most talented, (...)

West German goalkeeper Toni Schumacher (right) jumps past the ball as he gets ready to collide with French defender Patrick Battiston during the 1982 World Cup semi-final in Stockholm. Battiston was carried off the field on a stretcher while Schumacher, unpunished,  resumed play with a goal-kick. Photograph: AFP

The semi-final stage of the World Cup has, on balance, not been particularly kind to France. In 1958, the free-scoring team of Just Fontaine and Raymo(...)