The former PSV Eindhoven boss arrived with a fearsome coaching reputation, however, Advocaat’s playing career began at the relatively late age of 23, when he signed for Den Haag as a midfield general.
Dick spent three years at the club before moving on to Breda before joining Berlo then in 1980 he moved on to America, where he signed for National Soccer League Chicago Sting.
In 1982 he took his first steps into coaching, with Dutch amateur side DVSP. Two years later the Advocaat was appointed assistant manager to Rinus Michels with the Dutch national team.
Then in 1987, he was appointed manager of the Haarlem club but only spent two years there before joining ex-Celt Wim Jansen at Dordrecht.
In 1992, Advocaat took over from Michels as national boss and led the side to the quarter-finals of the 1994 World Cup. After the U.S. success he joined PSV Eindhoven and took them to the 1996 Dutch championship and the Dutch Cup ending the dominance of Amsterdam giants Ajax.
When Walter Smith announced his decision to leave the search was on to find a high-profile replacement and Dick was the man.
His first signing was his former skipper at PSV, Arthur Numan and other big names followed such as Andrei Kanchelskis, Giovanni Van Bronckhorst and Colin Hendry.
In his glorious first year in charge the Little General led the team to the domestic treble and that was no mean feat considering he had completely changed the team. Legends like Ian Durrant, Ally McCoist, Richard Gough, Brian Laudrup, Andy Goram and Stuart McCall were all gone so Dick’s achievement was truly remarkable.
Advocaat led the team to Celtic Park to clinch his first SPL title on May 2 1999 and two goals from Neil McCann and a penalty from Jorg Albertz sealed the victory in front of the joyous 7,000 away supporters.
Earlier in the season he had secured his first trophy, the League Cup, by beating St Johnstone 2-1 at Celtic Park with goals from Stephane Guivarc’h and Jorg Albertz.
And Rod Wallace made it a Treble with the only goal of the game in the Tennent’s Scottish Cup Final against Celtic. The Rangers punters simply lapped it up.
In the next year Rangers secured a domestic double beating Celtic to the title by a record 21 points and crushing Aberdeen 4-0 in the Scottish Cup Final. However, Martin O’Neill arrived at Parkhead the following season and halted Rangers’ dominance.
Even although things were tough on the domestic front, Dick guided Gers to the last 16 of the UEFA Cup in the 2001/02 season then announced he was stepping down as manager.
The Dutchman would stay on as Director of Football and was instrumental in the appointment of Alex McLeish in December 2001, but Dick’s legacy will be the creation of Murray Park.
Rangers opened their state of the art training facility on July 1, 2001 and the training ground has already helped nurture top team talent like Chris Burke, Alan Hutton, Stephen Hughes, Bob Malcolm, Mo Ross, Allan McGregor and Steven MacLean.
Dick quit Rangers for good in November 2002 to take the Holland national job on a full-time basis and although many supporters were critical of his final days at the club it is important to remember his early success and, above all, the creation of Murray Park!