Johan Cruyff was diagnosed with lung cancer this week. Since making the announcement, he has been festooned with messages of support.
His achievements as a player and manager are well known but his continuing impact at Barcelona is often forgotten.
As his protege Pep Guardiola said,
Johan Cruyff painted the chapel, and Barcelona coaches since merely restore or improve it
Between 1960 and 1990, Barcelona only won three League titles. In the same period, Real Madrid mustered nineteen.
Fortunes were to change when Cruyff, who was player of the year for one of Barcelona's barren era championship wins in 1974, took charge in the late 1980s.
He ushered in a style of play promulgated by Ajax's Rinus Michels in the early 1970s and the circle started to turn.
After a flat 1989-90, in which the President's casting vote prevented his sacking, Barcelona took wing in the early 90s.
The won four La Liga titles in a row between 1991 and 1994, as well as the club's first European Cup title following a 1-0 win over Sampdoria at Wembley in 1992.
Incidentally, two of the La Liga titles won in this period came via astonishing chokes by Real Madrid on the last day. Incredibly, in both the 1991-92 and 1992-93 season, Real Madrid lost their final game away to lowly Tenerife allowing Barca to leapfrog them in the table.
In the 27 years since Cruyff took the reins at the Nou Camp, Barcelona have won thirteen La Liga titles, eclipsing Real Madrid's nine.