Emotional night at Amsterdam Arena as match stops in memory of Johan Cruyff

The legendary Johan Cruyff in action

The legendary Johan Cruyff in action

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Holland’s friendly against France at the Amsterdam Arena was temporarily stopped in the 14th minute on Friday night as a mark of respect for Johan Cruyff.

With the action halted by the referee as planned, players from both sides, all wearing black armbands, took part in a minute’s applause that rang around the stadium in tribute to the Dutch football great widely regarded as one of the best footballers in history.

A banner with a picture of the late great Johan Cruyff who played in his famous number 14 shirt

A banner with a picture of the late great Johan Cruyff who played in his famous number 14 shirt

Cruyff’s image appeared on the stadium’s big screen during the applause, while a large banner displayed in one of the stands simply read “Johan Thanks”.

Dutch federation (KNVB) president Michael van Praag had earlier said: “I can’t wait for the moment when we rename our stadium the Johan Cruyff Arena. It’s the best tribute we can pay him.”

Cruyff, who wore the number 14 shirt for his country and led them as captain to the 1974 World Cup final, died on Thursday at the age of 68 after losing his battle with lung cancer.

A charity match between Feyenoord, the final club he played for, and Sparta Rotterdam on Thursday was also paused in the 14th minute in his honour.