Finidi George was so good Van Gaal bought him with his own money

Scooper One | 18th Nov 2015

Finidi George was so good Van Gaal bought him with his own money

One of the greatest players in Nigeria’s footballing history Finidi George was bought by AFC Ajax in 1993 while playing for Sharks FC of Port Harcourt in Nigeria. Now retired, the former winger was so good that Ajax found him as one of the talented players it needed at a time the club was in dire financial situation.

Louis van Gaal was in charge then, and he would do everything to get Finidi, even if it means using his own money.

“We didn’t have any money and we were bankrupt, so I had to look to youth. We scouted [Jari] Litmanen, a Finnish player, who we bought for £10,000. We also bought Finidi George. He was a Nigerian international. He was £3,000. I paid it by myself! And then, we bought Marc Overmars,” van Gaal told The Daily Telegraph.

Finidi arrived at AFC Ajax in 1993, alongside compatriot Nwankwo Kanu. His impact with the Amsterdam side was immediate as he scored four goals in 27 games to help it win the Eredivisie title, which was also achieved in the following two seasons; additionally, as a starter, he appeared in consecutive UEFA Champions League finals, winning the 1994–95 edition against A.C. Milan before moving to Spain in 1996.