‘Today we can be sad, tomorrow we focus on ADO’

‘Today we can be sad, tomorrow we focus on ADO’

Frank de Boer said that he doesn’t want his selection to mourn its elimination from European play for long. “Today we can still be sad, but starting tomorrow the focus needs to be completely on ADO.”

On the day following the return match against Dnipro, De Boer spoke of a ‘resigned feeling’ among his team. “We wanted to achieve something great and it didn’t work out. It’s a shame for the Ajax supporters and the players. The feeling of disappointment will remain, but we’ll need to process it quickly. On Sunday, we’re playing against ADO Den Haag.”

The last seven matches will be all about solidifying the hold on second place in the Eredivisie. “That’s the most important thing now”, said De Boer. “We’re already thinking about next season. We need to perfect the playing style and system. We’ll be able to spend more time working on that in the next few weeks, since we don’t have any more midweek matches.”

“If we end up in second place, our next European match will be coming up in July”, continues De Boer. “We need to ensure that we’re two steps ahead and are ready for that. It should be possible. This selection’s core will stay on for next season and I believe that we’re taking steps. I’ve seen improvement in the areas we’ve been focusing on in the past few weeks. We need to keep the faith. Just like in other matches, I felt that we missed depth against Dnipro, even though we were more threatening.”

Ajax came out of the match relatively unscathed. Only Nicolai Boilesen and Daley Sinkgraven have injuries. “Boilesen is having trouble with his ankles. The medication he received causes a much more severe reaction after the match than during the match itself. Sinkgraven got kneed in the thigh, but it’s not too bad. In terms of Sunday’s game, I’m not expecting many issues, despite the fact, of course, that it will be a tough match.”

As for Sunday’s opponent, ADO, De Boer is on his guard, and not only because of the short prep time. “ADO has shown in the past that they can give us a really hard time, both at home and away. But they’re not at their best right now and I’m expecting them – just like Dnipro – to be waiting to break out. But all we need is the three points, 1-0 is good enough.”

De Boer ended with good news. Viktor Fischer will return on Saturday for the Ajax Reserves’ match at De Graafschap. “The intention is for him to play thirty minutes. After a year’s absence, that’s great news for him and for Ajax.”