Marcel "Marco" van Basten (Dutch pronunciation: [ˈmɑr.koˑ vɑn.ˈbɑs.tə(n)], 31 October 1964) is a Dutch football manager and former football player, who played for Ajax and Milan, as well as the Dutch national team, in the 1980s and early 1990s. He is regarded as one of the greatest forwards of all time and has scored 277 goals in a high-profile career, but played his last game in 1993 at the age of 28 due to an injury which caused his retirement two years later. He was later the head coach of Ajax and the Dutch national team.
Known for his strength on the ball, his tactical awareness and spectacular strikes and volleys, Van Basten was named European Footballer of the Year three times (1988, '89 and '92) and FIFA World Player of the Year in 1992. Van Basten was voted eighth in a poll organised by the French weekly magazine France Football consulting their former Ballon d'Or winners to elect the Football Player of the Century. In 1999, Van Basten was ranked tenth in the European player of the Century election held by the IFFHS, and he was voted twelfth in the IFFHS' "World Player of the Century" election. In 2004, Pelé named Van Basten one of the 125 best living footballers in his FIFA 100 list. In 2004, a nationwide poll was held for the 100 greatest Dutch people (De Grootste Nederlander) and Van Basten was number 25, the second highest for a football player, behind Johan Cruyff. In March 2007, Sky Sports ranked Van Basten first on its list of great athletes who had their careers cut short.