Jari Olavi Litmanen (born: February 20, 1971) is a former soccer star who was named the best Finnish player of the past 50 years during the 2003 UEFA Jubilee Awards. He was the first-choice captain of the Finland national football team from 1996 to 2008 and ran an international career from 1989 to 2010. He is widely regarded as the greatest player in his country’s history. Not only Litmanen was the superstar of the Finnish national team, but also for other clubs including Ajax, where he won multiple titles for Eredivisie, KNVP Cup and Dutch Super Cup.
Greatest Sporting Achievements
Jari Litmanen was named Player of the Year by Finnish Sports’ Journalist for eight years (1990, 1992 to 1998). For 9 years, he became the Finnish Football Association Player of the year (1990, 1992-1998, 2000). He’s the all-time top scorer for the Finland national team (32 goals) and the all-time top scorer in Europe for Ajax (26 goals). His other awards were UEFA Champions League top scorer, Most-capped player for the Finland national team, European Footballer of the Year and many more.
Litmanen reached 100 goals for AFC Ajax (136 goals in 257 matches).
Why Was He So Good?
Jari Litmanen is considered to be one of the best attacking midfielders in the world. When he plays, he got a nose for the right position and had all the techniques and abilities for scoring. He is the king of assist, works hard for his team and can play on various positions.
What You May Not Know
- Jari Litmanen’s father was also a Finish international and a Reipas player. His mother also played for Reipas at the women’s highest level.
- He was only 16 when he debuted for Reipas in the Mestaruussarja in 1987.
- Jari Litmanen is the first Finnish athlete from a team to receive a statue.
- He was on the 42nd top on the Suuret Suomalaiset, a television show list of 100 Greatest Finns.
Was he a legend?
Do you agree with Jari Litmanen being a legend of football / soccer?
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