‘We could have gotten more out of this’

‘We could have gotten more out of this’

Frank de Boer is, on one hand, disappointed about the draw, but on the other hand, he can live with the one point that Ajax will bring back from Norway. But he realized that they could have done better: “This was probably the away game that we needed to have won.”

Considering the deluge of opportunities for Ajax in the first half, they rightfully should have won the three points. “We knew that Molde was waiting for us to make a mistake. We did, and they countered well. But after that, it was a long wait for our own goal. And we scored it with a bit of luck. We created many more opportunities.”

The coach also felt that Ajax didn’t deal with the conditions as well as Molde did. For example, it was very windy, but it was impossible to predict which way the wind would blow. “Especially in the second half, it was extremely difficult to tell what the ball was going to do. One time Jasper shot it directly into the opponent’s keeper, and the time after that, it barely cleared. I had the feeling that we had suffered more from this than they did.”

Lack of clarity

De Boer saw his team make a good start in the second half. “But after that, we had about twenty minutes where we were very careless. We lost possession so much, and with that, we lost grip on the game. Then Molde got some good opportunities.”

It wasn’t until the final minutes that De Boer made his first substitution. “I didn’t feel like anything needed to change. It was more that the players weren’t playing purely. Sometimes, it seemed like Davy just didn’t notice the blue player who was in front of him, because I’ve never seen him lose possession as much as today.”

Group is wide open

The good news is that Celtic and Fenerbahçe also tied in Glasgow. “So the group is wide open”, said De Boer gratefully. “We could have taken a good step forward, but I can live with one point.”
His fellow coach Erling Moe from Molde FK is very proud of his team. “There may be some hard matches coming up, but I think we can win this group. I’m extremely proud of the work they did to win this point. Our keeper Ethari Horvath played a fantastic game. I think it’s a good achievement that we got to 1-1. Ajax was a very good team, very confident with the ball.”