* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only
Wilhelmus Lourens Johannes Suurbier (Dutch pronunciation: ) (16 January 1945 - 12 July, 2020) was a Dutch former football player and among others assistant coach of the Albanian national team.
He was a wingback who was part of the Dutch national team and AFC Ajax teams of the 1970s.
1 Playing career
1.1 Professional clubs
2 Management career
3 Personal life
6 External links
Suurbier was born in Eindhoven, North Brabant. He made his debut for Ajax Amsterdam when he was 19 and played with them for 13 years, all throughout the most successful era until 1977 when he was 32 years old. Usually a right back, Suurbier was renowned for his pace and stamina. Suurbier was a big part of the 70's total football team the 'Twelve Apostles' of Ajax Amsterdam led by Johan Cruijff, which lifted the UEFA European Cup three times in a row. In 1977, he moved to FC Schalke 04 for one season.
In 1979, Suurbier transferred to the Los Angeles Aztecs of the North American Soccer League. He played three seasons in Los Angeles before moving to the San Jose Earthquakes for the 1982 season. In the fall of 1982, the team was renamed the Golden Bay Earthquakes and entered the Major Indoor Soccer League. He retired at the end of the season to become an assistant coach with the Earthquakes. He later resumed his playing career as a player-coach of the Tampa Bay Rowdies in the American Indoor Soccer Association.
Suurbier played 60 matches and scored 3 goals for the Netherlands national football team from 1966 to 1978. He played in both the 1974 and 1978 World Cups where the Dutch finished second, and also the 1976 UEFA European Football Championship.
In 1983, Suurbier was an assistant coach with the Golden Bay Earthquakes. In 1984, the Tulsa Roughnecks of the North American Soccer League hired Suurbier as head coach. He took the team to a 10–14 record. In 1986, he became the head coach of the Los Angeles Heat of the Western Soccer League. In the fall of 1986, he was hired by the Tampa Bay Rowdies as the team entered the American Indoor Soccer Association. In November 1987, Suurbier became the head coach of the newly established Fort Lauderdale Strikers in preparation of the team's first season in 1988. That season, the Strikers finished and went to the American Soccer League championship before falling to the Washington Diplomats. In January 1989, Suurbier resigned as coach of the Strikers. In February 1989, he was named the new head coach of the Miami Sharks. After starting the season at 2–3, the Sharks fired Suurbier. In 1994, he became the head coach of the St. Petersburg Kickers. In 1999 Suurbier joined Al Etehad (Qatar) as an assistant coach to Rene Meulensteen. Together they won the Arab Cup and H.H. Apparent Cup that season. The year after they joined Al Sadd (Qatar) and in season 2000–01 they won the Emir cup. From 2001–02 Suurbier worked for Heerenveen as an assistant for the U-20 squad.
In May 2020, it was reported that Suurbier was in intensive care after having suffered a "major" intracerebral haemorrhage.. Suurbier passed away on July 12th, 2020.
Eredivisie (7): 1965–66, 1966–67, 1967–68, 1969–70, 1971–72, 1972–73, 1976–77
KNVB Cup: 1967, 1970, 1971, 1972
European Cup: 1971, 1972, 1973
European Super Cup: 1972, 1973
Intercontinental Cup: 1972
FIFA World Cup Runner-up: 1974
UEFA European Championship Third place: 1976
FIFA World Cup Runner-up: 1978
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