Theo Janssen (July 27, 1981) was a midfielder known for his "golden left leg" and his striking personality. The born Arnhemmer was part of a talented generation of Vitesse with Nicky Hofs, Ruud Knol and Jhonny van Beukering, among others.
Janssen played the first ten years of his career at Vitesse, including the half year he was hired by Racing Genk. However, he returned home to Arnhem with nostalgia. Janssen would become a club icon of Vites in three periods. He also played most of the games for the club. He took over this record from Theo Bos in August 2013. In 242 games, Theo Janssen scored 23 times.
In the summer of 2008, 'Tattoo Theo' signed a contract with FC Twente. He was suspended in his first year because he caused an accident with alcohol that left four people injured. Including his brother Johan and friend and former professor Kevin Moeliker. The following year Janssen became champion with the Tukkers. In his third season in Enschede it became really clear how well Janssen could play football. He had the best season of his career and won the Johan Cruijff scale and the KNVB cup.
Theo Janssen scored no less than twenty times in 46 games and was partly the winner of the Golden Shoe. In 2015, it was announced that Theo Janssen was voted Best player in the club history of FC Twente by supporters of the club, a public award organized by Tubantia newspaper. "did the supporters drink or something?", were the telling words of Janssen after receiving the prize.
After his successful season, Theo Janssen transferred to Ajax. The team from Amsterdam had great expectations, but the midfielder would only be seen in the capital for a year despite a championship. In the team of trainer Frank de Boer, he was frequently used as a defensive midfielder, while his strength lay in the more attacking part of the midline. Still, afterwards, Janssen did not regret his transition to the Arena. "Ajax is a top club that you don't just say 'no' to. And the chance I got was so good financially, for an Ajax season I should have played football in Enschede for years to come. "
After leaving Ajax, Janssen returned to his Vitesse where he was able to play injury-free football for a year. In October 2013, Janssen was seriously injured and this caused him to end his career in March 2014.
Theo Janssen played for various representative youth teams in the Netherlands. In 1999, the Arnhemmer was suspended for a year because he jokingly pushed teammate Peter Wisgerhof into the water at the local port during the Toulon tournament. Janssen made his debut for the Dutch national team against Ireland. He played a total of five international matches.
That Janssen occasionally lit a cigarette was no secret. The Arnhemmer enjoys the pleasures of life. Yet Frank de Boer, his coach at Ajax at the time, did not think this was a good idea: "It is very simple, I do not want to see Theo smoking in public." Tattoo Theo himself said about this: "Well and. Enough people smoke. Are those bad people? I am the only professional footballer it is known for, but I see it happen every week. The rest do it secretly, in a corner. Not me.'
After his career, Theo Janssen acknowledged that he could have got more out of it. "But I'm fine with it." There is life next to football.
Nowadays, the Arnhemmer is assistant coach of Jong Vitesse