First published on FourFourTwo
In February of 1974, Danny Coster gave birth to her son Jordi by Caesarean section. The operation was carefully timed to coincide with a short period of time off work that Danny’s husband Johan had been granted by his employers. It just so happened that Johan was one of the world’s greatest footballers, and his employers FC Barcelona one of the world’s greatest football clubs – and who, the weekend that Jordi Cruyff was born, had no fixtures scheduled to be played.
So it was that Jordi Cruyff was predestined to a life spent living not just with his famous surname, but also his symbolic given name. Sant Jordi – Saint George – is the patron saint of Barcelona and Catalonia, and Johan Cruyff had fought with the Francoist authorities of 1970s Spain in order to circumvent a ban on the use of Catalan names and register it to his son in that form (as opposed to the Spanish “Jorge”). It was a name that would forever bond Cruyff junior with Catalonia, and by extension the iconic status held by his father within the region.