Viergever: ‘We want to recapture the feeling from last year'

Viergever: ‘We want to recapture the feeling from last year'

Nick Viergever is attempting to re-create last season’s feeling for the important double-header against Rosenborg.  At that time, Ajax reached the Europa League finals.  “The whole process and the many games we played, and what we went through as a selection.  Those are definitely things that we will bring with us tomorrow. We had a fantastic year in Europe, and we want to recapture that feeling.”

'The stakes are high'

“In this double-header, playing European football is at stake”, continued Viergever.  “If we don’t make it, then we don’t have anything.  The stakes are high.”

'Make mistakes'
Viergeven is thus hoping to get into a flow with Ajax soon.  “The system needs to come back to life in the group as soon as possible.  We saw that last season, and the previous ones, too.  You need to slowly grow together as a group.  This requires time and games.  You also need to make mistakes in order to learn to recognize them.”

During the press conference, fellow defender Davinson Sánchez was discussed.  The defender is enjoying some attention from abroad, and because of this, he was absent during last Saturday’s game against Heracles.  He will be present at the second European home game of the season, but coach Marcel Keizer wouldn’t reveal whether or not the Colombian player would start.  “I’ve never revealed the line-up prior to the game, and I’m not going to start now.”

'It’s not ideal, but many clubs are in the same situation'

Keizer was asked by reporters if the situation around Sánchez has disrupted preparations for this important European match.  “Of course, a bit”, admitted the Ajax coach.  “But we don’t want to hide behind that.  It’s not ideal, but many other clubs are in the same situation.  As long as August 31st hasn’t passed, we’ll need to deal with this.  And we’re doing that, in a mature way.”

Parallels
Keizer does expect a tough opponent in Rosenborg, a team that has been ‘thoroughly examined’.  “They’re a pretty good team, very strong physically.  And they also play 4-3-3, although they do it differently than we do.  They come from their own half, on the counter.”

'It’s a tough draw, but I’m counting on the fact that we can get the job done.'

Keizer hastened to add that there is nothing wrong with that. “It’s a good strategy, let’s be clear about that.”

“With Norwegian teams, you think of physically strong teams, who play a compact game.  But Rosenborg also has several creative players.  It’s a tough draw, but I’m counting on the fact that we can get the job done.  The stadium will be full, which is to our advantage.  I’m expecting a great game.”