What’s next for Ajax?29 May 2019
Photo Credit – https://english.ajax.nl/streams/ajax-now.htm
After securing the double this season by winning the Dutch Cup for the 19th time and the Eredivisie title for a record 34 times, the future of some players looks in doubt as speculation starts to grow on the stars that made Ajax achieve so much.
One player who has already moved on is the young midfielder Frenkie de Jong, who has signed for Barcelona for a fee that could rise to 86 million Euros. The 22 year old known for his dribbling, match intelligence, close control of the ball, passing range and variety of technique has put in some exquisite performances this season including world class displays away to Juventus and Real Madrid in the Champions League.
Matthijs de Ligt, Donny van de Beek and David Neres along with Frenkie de Jong have all been the wonder kids for Ajax this season meaning they are now being talked about by millions across Europe. As speculation starts to grow, Ajax supporters will be hoping that they can keep these star players for more future success.
Barcelona have already snapped up Frenkie de Jong and they will be looking to do the same with Matthijs de Ligt amid interest from Manchester United. The Spanish giants are currently 1/2 favourites to sign the 19 year old whereas Manchester United are 11/4 second favourites so it will be very interesting to see where De Ligt ends up.
All the talk is mostly on the Ajax youngsters but people cannot forget the seasons Hakim Ziyech and Dusan Tadic have had. In all competitions, the pair managed to collect a combined amount of 87 goals and assists between them both which is staggering. This has led to teams snooping around them in particular Hakim Ziyech with Bayern Munich reportedly interested.
I do not think anyone would have predicted the job manager Erik ten Hag has done. The recruitment was spot on from the beginning as he brought in players such as Dusan Tadic, Daley Blind and Nicolas Tagliafico, they have all gone on to have fantastic seasons with Tagliafico confirming that he will be staying for at least one more year. “I want to tell you [the fans] that I will stay for one more season. Hopefully it will be a great year. Like it is this year.” With Barcelona looking for a new manager, Ajax will be keeping faith hoping they do not come calling for the Dutch coach.
It will be key to get the right players in to replace those that may move on and the right mix with their academy as I am sure more players will be coming through their ranks for many years to come. So far this summer, Ajax have already signed four players with two coming from the Eredivisie, one from Belgium and the fourth from Argentina.
Kik Pierie is an 18 year old centre back who has signed from SC Heerenveen, this could be a very shrewd signing as he is full of potential and could be another one to bring more success to Ajax in the coming years. Kjell Scherpen is another teenager who has signed for the Dutch champions, he is a goalkeeper who will learn a lot from Ajax’s CEO Edwin van der Sar.
Signing from Standard Liege for 12 million Euros, Razvan Marin comes in as a potential Frenkie de Jong replacement. The Romanian international impressed this season in Belgium scoring 10 goals and getting 8 assists in 38 matches, if he performs like Frenkie de Jong did then Ajax fans will not be disappointed.
With the rumours circulating around Matthijs de Ligt and his future with Ajax, they could well be in need of a new centre half who would be ready to come in and replace the 19 year old wonder kid. Lisandro Martinez could be that man as he has signed from Defensa y Justicia in Argentina. This summer transfer window is crucial for Ajax to get business done as it looks highly likely their best players could be on the way out to join bigger European outfits.