21 February 2011
Luis Suarez bid farewell to Ajax after the Ajax – VVV match (1-0) on Sunday. Immediately after the last whistle, Ajax’s former top scorer became the centre of attention. After a heart-warming speech by assistant coach Danny Blind, he did a lap of honour which ended with a spectacular fire work show.Blind succinctly summarized Suarez’s development with Ajax during the last three and a half years. The 24 year old forward underwent a metamorphosis in several areas between his time at FC Groningen and his new club Liverpool. His Ajax years marked him and made him who he is today. “You came to us as a young player with long hair. But you grew with us. You became a top scorer, captain, and father. It’s time for a new step, although we regret to see you go. We would have loved to keep you with us for longer.”
Blind, who addressed Suarez on behalf of the SVA and AFCA Supporters club, summarized all of the top scorer’s fine statistics. “You were present in pretty much each category: most attempts on goal, most goals scored, most assists, and also most hits on the crossbar or the post. But one statistic says it all: 111 goals for Ajax in 159 games.” A deafening applause from the stands emphasized Blind’s words.
After Blind’s speech, Suarez shot 50 balls from Ajax’s head sponsor AEGON into the stands. An impressive fire work display at the stadium’s south side was a fitting finish to the Suarez era. As to whether or not Liverpool’s forward will ever return, remains to be seen. Suarez himself closed with these words: “Thank you for everything, and see you later!”