Famous Dutch Sportspersons

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Find out more about the greatest Dutch Sportspersons, including Alistair Overeem, Robin van Persie, Guus Hiddink, Louis van Gaal and Arjen Robben.
Vote for Your Favourite Dutch Sportspersons
 1 
Max Verstappen
(The Most Successful Dutch Racing Driver and 2021 Formula One World Champion)
Max Verstappen
14
Birthdate: September 30, 1997
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Hasselt, Flanders, Belgium
 2 
Johan Cruyff
(One of the Greatest Football Players & One of the Best Managers Ever)
Johan Cruyff
14
Birthdate: April 25, 1947
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Amsterdam, Netherlands
Died: March 24, 2016
Dutch midfielder/forward Johan Cruyff pioneered the idea of Total Football, along with coach Rinus Michels. The first three-time Ballon d'Or-winner was known for his signature move, the Cruyff Turn. He made it to FIFA 100 and ranked second only to Pele in an official World Player of the Century poll.
 3 
Ruud Gullit
(One of the Greatest Football Players of All Time)
Ruud Gullit
11
Birthdate: September 1, 1962
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Amsterdam, Netherlands

Ruud Gullit is a Dutch former football player. Considered one of the greatest players in the history of football, Gullit was known for his versatility as he could play as an attacking midfielder, forward, or midfielder. During the 1988 UEFA European Football Championship, he led his national team to its first title.

 4 
Virgil van Dijk
(Dutch Professional Football Centre-Back)
Virgil van Dijk
14
Birthdate: July 8, 1991
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Breda, Netherlands

Dutch footballer Virgil van Dijk plays as a defender for Liverpool and has won several titles, such as a Premier League, with them. Starting his senior career with Groningen, he later played for teams such as Celtic and Southampton. He is the only defender to be named the UEFA Men's Player of the Year.

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 5 
Robin van Persie
(Regarded as One of the Best Football Strikers of His Generation)
Robin van Persie
10
Birthdate: August 6, 1983
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Rotterdam, Netherlands

Once one of the world’s highest-paid athletes, Dutch football coach and retired footballer Robin van Persie is also known as one of the greatest strikers of his time. He had successful stints with Arsenal and Manchester United and was also part of the Dutch squad that was the 2010 FIFA World Cup runner-up.

 6 
Dennis Bergkamp
(Dutch Retired Football Forward)
Dennis Bergkamp
8
Birthdate: May 10, 1969
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Amsterdam

Dutch football coach and retired player Dennis Bergkamp had a successful playing career with clubs such as Ajax, Arsenal, and Inter Milan. Initially a midfielder, he later played as a striker. The 2-time FIFA World Player of the Year bronze winner also gained the nickname the Non-Flying Dutchman for his fear of flying.

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 7 
Marco van Basten
(Former Dutch Football Star)
Marco van Basten
6
Birthdate: October 31, 1964
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Utrecht, Netherlands
Dutch footballer Marco van Basten is known for his successful stints at Ajax and Milan and won the Champions League thrice with the latter. However, an ankle injury cut his career short. The three-time Ballon d'Or winner later took over as the manager of Ajax and the Dutch national team.
 8 
Arjen Robben
(Football Player)
Arjen Robben
10
Birthdate: January 23, 1984
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Bedum, Netherlands

Widely considered one of the best Dutch soccer players of all time, Arjen Robben is known for his long-range shots, ball control, speed, and dribbling skills. He helped his national team reach the finals of the 2010 FIFA World Cup, which they lost to Spain.

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 9 
Frank Rijkaard
(Dutch Former Football Player and Former Manager Who Played as a Forward)
Frank Rijkaard
4
Birthdate: September 30, 1962
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Amsterdam, Netherlands
Dutch footballer and former manager Franklin Rijkaard has represented clubs such as Ajax, Real Zaragoza, and A.C. Milan. He has also coached clubs such as Barcelona and Sparta Rotterdam and the Dutch and Saudi Arabian national teams. He has also earned the 2005-2006 UEFA Manager of the Year honor.
 10 
Memphis Depay
(Dutch Football Forward)
Memphis Depay
9
Birthdate: February 13, 1994
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Moordrecht, Netherlands

Dutch footballer Memphis Depay is best known as a forward for Barcelona. Starting his senior career with PSV Eindhoven, he later also played for Manchester United and Lyon. He was also part of the 2014 FIFA World Cup third-place-winning Dutch squad and was the Eredivisie top scorer in 2014-15.

 11 
Wim Hof
(Dutch Extreme Athlete Known for His Ability to Withstand Low Temperatures)
Wim Hof
9
Birthdate: April 20, 1959
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Sittard, Limburg, Netherlands

Wim Hof, or The Iceman, is a Dutch extreme athlete and motivational speaker who holds a Guinness record for the fastest half-marathon completed barefoot on ice/snow. He has also devised the Wim Hof Method, which helps one gain control over one’s body through extreme cold tolerance.

 12 
Patrick Kluivert
(Retired Dutch Football Striker)
Patrick Kluivert
6
Birthdate: July 1, 1976
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Amsterdam, Netherlands

Patrick Kluivert was one of the star Dutch footballers of his time who played as a striker for clubs such as Ajax, Barcelona, and AC Milan. The UEFA Euro 2000 Golden Boot winner has also managed teams such as Netherlands and Cameroon. He later held administrative positions at Paris Saint-Germain and Barcelona.

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 13 
Georginio Wijnaldum
(Dutch Football Midfielder)
Georginio Wijnaldum
5
Birthdate: November 11, 1990
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Rotterdam, Netherlands

Dutch footballer Georginio Wijnaldum plays as a midfielder for the Italian club Roma and the French club Paris Saint-Germain. Starting his youth career with Feyenoord, as the youngest-ever player of the club, he later had successful stints with Liverpool and PSV and was the 2014 FIFA World Cup third-place-winning Dutch squad.

 14 
Hakim Ziyech
(Dutch Football Attacking Midfielder or Winger)
Hakim Ziyech
8
Birthdate: March 19, 1993
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Dronten, Netherlands

Dutch footballer Hakim Ziyech, or The Wizard, now represents Chelsea as an attacking midfielder/winger. After beginning his senior career with Heerenveen, he had a successful stint with Ajax, winning titles such as the Eredivisie with them. After representing the Dutch youth teams earlier, he now plays for the Moroccan national team.

 15 
Matthijs de Ligt
(Football Player)
Matthijs de Ligt
7
Birthdate: August 12, 1999
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Leiderdorp

Dutch footballer Matthijs de Ligt currently plays for Serie A club Juventus and the Netherlands national team as a center-back. Making his debut in 2016, he became the youngest player ever to play in a major European final the following year. Football pundits consider him to among the most highly regarded young prospects in world football.

 16 
Alistair Overeem
(Heavyweight Mixed Martial Artist, Kickboxer)
Alistair Overeem
10
Birthdate: May 17, 1980
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: London, England, United Kingdom
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 17 
Wesley Sneijder
(Considered One of the Best Midfielders of His Time)
Wesley Sneijder
6
Birthdate: June 9, 1984
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Utrecht, Utrecht, Netherlands

Retired Dutch footballer Wesley Sneijder was known as one of the best midfielders of his time. Starting his senior career with Ajax, he later had successful stints with Real Madrid, Inter Milan, and Galatasaray. He was also part of the Dutch squad that became the 2010 FIFA World Cup runner-up.

 18 
Frenkie de Jong
(Dutch Footballer Who Plays as a Midfielder )
Frenkie de Jong
7
Birthdate: May 12, 1997
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Gorinchem, Netherlands
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 19 
Edwin van der Sar
(Former Dutch Football Goalkeeper)
Edwin van der Sar
6
Birthdate: October 29, 1970
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Voorhout, Netherlands

Ajax CEO and retired Dutch footballer Edwin van der Sar began his senior career with Ajax, winning countless titles with them, such as the Eredivisie and the UEFA Champion’s League. The talented goalkeeper later had successful stints with Juventus, Fulham, and Manchester United. He has also been a 2-time Best European Goalkeeper.

 20 
Louis van Gaal
(Retired Dutch Football Midfielder Who Later Turned Into a Successful Coach)
Louis van Gaal
7
Birthdate: August 8, 1951
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Amsterdam, Netherlands

Retired Dutch footballer Louis van Gaal was a midfielder and now serves the Dutch national team as its head coach. While he began his playing career with Ajax, he later had an immensely successful managerial career with Ajax, Barcelona, and Bayern Munich, and was named the 1995 World Soccer Manager of the Year.

 21 
Badr Hari
(Moroccan-Dutch Heavyweight Kickboxer)
Badr Hari
5
Birthdate: December 8, 1984
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Amsterdam, Netherlands

Moroccan-Dutch kickboxer Badr Hari, also known as Bad Boy and The Golden Boy, has won the K-1 Heavyweight and Showtime Heavyweight championships. He represented the Netherlands until his loss to Stefan Leko, after which he began playing for Morocco, due to aggressive criticism from his Dutch fans.

 22 
Ryan Babel
(Dutch Footballer Who Can Play as a Striker or Left Winger)
Ryan Babel
4
Birthdate: December 19, 1986
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Amsterdam, Netherlands

Dutch footballer Ryan Babel who plays as both a striker and a midfielder, currently represents the Turkish club Eyüpspor. Starting his senior career with Ajax, he won both the KNVB Cup and the Eredivisie twice with them. He was also part of the 2010 FIFA World Cup runner-up Dutch team.

 23 
Arie Luyendyk Jr.
(Dutch-American Auto Racing Driver, Television Personality, and Son of Racing Driver Arie Luyendyk)
Arie Luyendyk Jr.
5
Birthdate: September 18, 1981
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: 's-Hertogenbosch, Netherlands

Born in the Netherlands, to 2-time Indianapolis 500 champion Arie Luyendyk, Arie Luyendyk Jr. moved to the US with his family at age 3. He followed in his father’s footsteps to enter the arena of auto racing. He later gained fame with his appearance on The Bachelorette and his romance with Lauren Burnham.

 24 
Nathan Aké
(Dutch Footballer Who Plays as a Defender)
Nathan Aké
5
Birthdate: February 18, 1995
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: The Hague, Netherlands
 25 
Klaas Jan Huntelaar
(Retired Dutch Football Striker)
Klaas Jan Huntelaar
4
Birthdate: 1983 AD
Birthplace: Bronckhorst

Retired Dutch footballer Klaas Jan Huntelaar, who played as a striker, had successful stints with club such as Ajax and Schalke 04, winning the KNVB Cup thrice with the former, among other championships. He was also part of the Dutch squad that became the runner-up at the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

 26 
Tahith Chong
(Footballer)
Tahith Chong
5
Birthdate: December 4, 1999
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Willemstad, Curaçao
Though born to a Curaçao-based footballer, Dutch footballer Tahith Chong had never watched football before the 2006 World Cup. He left for the Netherlands to train at 8 and never looked back. The Manchester United winger, who is currently on loan with Club Brugge, is of African and Chinese descent. 
 27 
Michael van Gerwen
(Darts player)
Michael van Gerwen
5
Birthdate: April 25, 1989
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Boxtel, Netherlands
 28 
Guus Hiddink
(Former Dutch Footballer Who Played as a Midfielder)
Guus Hiddink
4
Birthdate: November 8, 1946
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Varsseveld
 29 
Dirk Kuyt
(Former Dutch Footballer Who Played as a Striker and Winger)
Dirk Kuyt
4
Birthdate: July 22, 1980
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Katwijk
 30 
Aleister Black
(Wrestler)
Aleister Black
11
Birthdate: May 19, 1985
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Alkmaar, Netherlands
 31 
Dafne Schippers
3
Birthdate: June 15, 1992
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Utrecht, Netherlands
 32 
Jaap Stam
(One of the Greatest Football Defenders of His Time)
Jaap Stam
4
Birthdate: July 17, 1972
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Kampen, Netherlands

Dutch football coach and retired footballer Jaap Stam is regarded as one of the greatest defenders of his time. Starting his senior career with FC Zwolle, he later had successful stints with clubs such as Manchester United, Ajax, and PSV. Post-retirement, he has also coached teams such as Reading and PEC Zwolle.

 33 
Quincy Promes
(Dutch Footballer Who Plays as a Forward or Midfielder)
Quincy Promes
5
Birthdate: January 4, 1992
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Amsterdam, Netherlands
 34 
Germaine de Randamie
(Mixed martial artist)
Germaine de Randamie
5
Birthdate: April 24, 1984
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Utrecht, Netherlands
 35 
Ruud van Nistelrooy
(Former Dutch Footballer Who Played as a Striker)
Ruud van Nistelrooy
6
Birthdate: July 1, 1976
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Geffen, Netherlands
 36 
Marc Overmars
(Former Dutch Footballer Who Played as a Winger)
Marc Overmars
3
Birthdate: March 29, 1973
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Emst
 37 
Gegard Mousasi
(Dutch Mixed Martial Artist, Former Kickboxer and Two-Time Bellator Middleweight Champion)
Gegard Mousasi
6
Birthdate: August 1, 1985
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Tehran, Iran
Gegard Mousasi, also known as “The Dreamcatcher,” was an amateur boxer and kickboxer before he soared to fame as a mixed martial artist. He now competes for Bellator MMA and is a two-time Bellator middleweight world champion. He has also previously been the DREAM light heavyweight and middleweight champion.
 38 
Bas Rutten
(Actor, Former Mixed Martial Artist, Kickboxer and Professional Wrestler)
Bas Rutten
4
Birthdate: February 24, 1965
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Tilburg, Netherlands

Bas Rutten is a Dutch–American actor, former kickboxer, mixed martial artist, and professional wrestler. A former UFC Heavyweight Champion and a King of Pancrase world champion, Rutten finished his career on a high as he remained unbeaten for the last 22 fights of his career. In 2015, Bas Rutten was made an inductee of the UFC Hall of Fame.

 39 
Maarten Stekelenburg
(Dutch Football Goalkeeper)
Maarten Stekelenburg
4
Birthdate: September 22, 1982
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Haarlem, Noord-Holland, Netherlands

Dutch footballer Maarten Stekelenburg, the goalkeeper for Ajax, has had a successful stint with the club, winning both the Eredivisie and the KNVB Cup with them 4 times. He was also part of the Dutch squad that became the runner-up at the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

 40 
Ronald Koeman
(Football Manager, Football Player)
Ronald Koeman
32
Birthdate: March 21, 1963
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Zaandam, Netherlands

Dutch formerfootball  player Ronald Koeman was one of the stars of the Netherlands national team during his playing days. After his retirement, he became a professional football manager and is currently the head coach of La Liga club Barcelona. Tremendously successful as a head coach, he was made the manager of Barcelona in 2020.

 41 
Edgar Davids
(Retired Surinamese-Dutch Football Defensive Midfielder)
Edgar Davids
4
Birthdate: March 13, 1973
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Paramaribo, Suriname

Born in Suriname, footballer Edgar Davids moved to the Netherlands as an infant and grew up to start his youth football career with Ajax. The retired Dutch defensive midfielder had successful stints with Ajax, Juventus, and Inter Milan. He also played for the Dutch national team, which he now serves as an assistant coach.

 42 
Ibrahim Afellay
(Retired Moroccan-Dutch Football Attacking Midfielder/Winger)
Ibrahim Afellay
6
Birthdate: April 2, 1986
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Utrecht, Netherlands

Retired Moroccan-Dutch footballer Ibrahim Afellay played as an attacking midfielder/winger. Starting his senior career with PSV Eindhoven, he later had successful stints with Barcelona and Olympiacos. He was also part of the Dutch squad that became the runner-up at the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

 43 
Clarence Seedorf
(Dutch Professional Football Manager and Former Player Who is Considered One of the Best Midfielders of His Generation)
Clarence Seedorf
6
Birthdate: April 1, 1976
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Paramaribo, Suriname

Clarence Seedorf is a Dutch former football player. Widely considered one of the best midfielders of his era, Seedorf was included in Pelé's FIFA 100 list in 2004. Having won several continental and domestic titles for clubs in the Netherlands, Brazil, Italy, and Spain, Clarence Seedorf is one of the most celebrated and decorated Dutch players of all time.

 44 
Steven Bergwijn
(Surinamese-Origin Dutch Footballer Who Is a Winger)
Steven Bergwijn
5
Birthdate: October 8, 1997
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Amsterdam, Netherlands
Dutch footballer Steven Bergwijn is best known as a winger for Ajax. He has been a 3-time Eredivisie winner with PSV and an EFL Cup runner-up with Tottenham Hotspur. The Surinamese-origin player also plays for the Dutch national team and has been the 2014 UEFA European Under-17 Championship Golden Player.
 45 
Dick Advocaat
(Dutch Former Football Midfielder and Defender)
Dick Advocaat
3
Birthdate: September 27, 1947
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: The Hague

Dutch football coach and former footballer Dick Advocaat was a midfielder and defender in his playing days. He was 18 when he began his senior career and later had successful stints with clubs such as PSV Eindhoven and Rangers. His 2008 UEFA Cup with with Zenit earned him an honorary citizenship of St. Petersburg.

 46 
Jos Verstappen
(Retired Dutch Formula One Racer Who Later Turned to Coaching)
Jos Verstappen
4
Birthdate: March 4, 1972
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Montfort, Netherlands

Retired Dutch racing driver Jos Verstappen, who had an illustrious career with Formula One, had begun his career with karting at age 8. He raced for 7 teams, including Benetton and Minardi. He later turned to coaching and trained his son Max Verstappen, who became a Formula One World Champion in 2021.

 47 
Gökhan Saki
(Mixed Martial Artist)
Gökhan Saki
4
Birthdate: October 18, 1983
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Schiedam, Netherlands
 48 
Patrick van Aanholt
(Dutch Footballer Who Plays as a Left-Back)
Patrick van Aanholt
4
Birthdate: August 29, 1990
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: 's-Hertogenbosch, Netherlands
 49 
Rico Verhoeven
(Dutch Kickboxing Star Known as the 'King of Kickboxing')
Rico Verhoeven
4
Birthdate: April 10, 1989
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Bergen op Zoom, Netherlands

Touted by the media as The King of Kickboxing, Dutch kickboxer Rico Verhoeven is the current Glory Heavyweight Champion. Inspired by his karate black belt father, he stepped into martial arts at age 5 and was competing against adults by age 16 due to his huge frame.

 50 
Semmy Schilt
(Kickboxer)
Semmy Schilt
4
Birthdate: October 27, 1973
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Rotterdam, Netherlands