100 years since the birth of Abe Lenstra

Abe Lenstra is regarded by many as one of the greatest Dutch football players of all time. Abe Minderts Lenstra was born on 27 November 1920 in Heerenveen and was soon known for his sporting qualities in his youth. In addition to football, he was also known for his talent as a skater and athlete and for some time belonged to the top of skating in the Northern Netherlands. He eventually opted for football: as a 15 year old he made his debut in the first team of Heerenveen. In his career he scored 763 goals in about 760 matches.

The carte blanche of Fiorentina

Abe Lenstra was also immensely popular outside the Netherlands. Several top clubs like Ajax and Internazionale wanted to add him to their selection. The story goes that Fiorentina even offered him a blank cheque, but Lenstra did not want to leave 'his' Heerenveen. The event was recalled on a gramophone record, sung by Lenstra herself:

"They sent me a blank cheque, I stroke my chin once.

Because a very small letter said: fill in the cheque yourself.

Then my wife said: Hey, don't hesitate, ask for a million!

But I said: No, you're crazy, what if they do it".

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