Jan van Beveren, one of the great Dutch goalkeepers of all-time and one of the best goalies to move from abroad to play in the old NASL, died Sunday at his home in Houston, where he had settled and coached youth soccer.
Van Beveren starred at PSV Eindhoven when it won the UEFA Cup in 1978. An injury kept him off the Dutch team that finished second at the 1974 World Cup and he retired from Oranje before the 1978 World Cup, where it also was the runner-up.
He spent four seasons with the Ft. Lauderdale Strikers (1980-83) and played indoors for the Dallas Sidekicks for three years (1984-86).
Van Beveren spent the last four years as the director of training at the small Spindletop Soccer Club in Beaumont, Texas.
"I know right now they're running hour-long specials in Holland, but that's not the Jan that we knew," Spindletop president Kelly Krouttertold the Beaumont Enterprise. "We just knew the nice, compassionate, down-to-earth guy who loved soccer and he loved teaching kids. He didn't want the limelight or the fame after he retired. He wanted to come to a small city like Beaumont and teach kids that he felt that needed the help and where he felt he could make a difference in this world."