Celtic have sent their best wishes to Wim Jansen after it was revealed the former Parkhead manager has been suffering from dementia.
Jansen, who turns 75 on Thursday, talks about living with the illness in a biography of his life, which will be published in the Netherlands this week.
The Dutch football legend famously led the Hoops to the Scottish Premiership title in his only season in charge in 1998, stopping Rangers from winning ten-in-a-row, while sealing League Cup winners crown.
Despite his success, Jansen’s arrival in Glasgow was met with scepticism among supporters when he was named as the shock successor to Tommy Burns following a spell in Japan with Sanfrecce Hiroshima.
He would prove his doubters wrong by signing Celtic hero Henrik Larsson before leaving fans stunned as he left his position just two days after their domestic title success.
His new book ‘Meesterbrein’ written by Youri van den Busken, discusses how Jansen decided to seek medical opinion after reading about his former Dutch international colleague, Piet Schrijvers, who suffers from Alzheimer’s disease, because he recognised the same symptoms.
Jansen was part of a successful Feyenoord side that beat Celtic in the 1970 European Cup Final in Milan before going on to make over 500 appearances for the Eredivisie giants.
He helped the Dutch national team to two separate World Cup Finals in 1974 and 1978 before embarking on a career in management.
Jansen made an emotional return to Feyenoord as the club’s technical advisor and then became assistant manager before retiring in in 2010.
A statement published on Celtic’s official website this afternoon read: “Wim will be forever held in the highest regard by the Celtic Family for his success in winning the league title for the club back in the 1997/98 season, the year when the Hoops famously ‘stopped the 10’.
“Our thoughts are with Wim and his family, and the best wishes of the whole Celtic Family are with a man who delivered one of the most important title triumphs in the club’s history.
“Wim, You’ll Never Walk Alone.”
Despite his short managerial reign, Jansen left his mark on Celtic supporters who expressed their sadness at the news on fan forum pages.
Bellshill Boy: “Heart-breaking for him and his family, will ALWAYS have a wee place in the heart and minds of all Celtic fans.”
Maestro: “Best wishes and prayers for Wim The Tim. I’m sure his determination and help from his friends and family will help him battle this terrifying disease.”
Kelly: “Sad to hear he has such a horrible illness and hope he finds comfort in those around him.”
JamSam67: “Just bringing Henrik Larsson to us deserves our thanks. Now he faces this horrible disease, one of the worst. In mine and all Celtic fans prayers. Wim Jansen – Always a Celtic.”