According to Frank de Boer, Ajax faces a tough afternoon away at ADO Den Haag on Sunday. “This will be a much tougher match that against Paris Saint-Germain, I’m convinced of that”, said the coach on Friday’s press conference. “ADO will not give us the time and room that PSG did. We know what’s coming.”
Tuesday’s defeat in the Champions League match was discussed at Friday’s press meeting. De Boer repeated his point of view that Ajax failed to post a good result in the French capital. “There are very few teams who can play so dominantly against PSG”, stated De Boer. “That’s positive. But you need to create opportunities and be focused on scoring. That’s what we need to realize. Our play against PSG was good, but not good enough.”
Nicolai Boilesen was injured in Parc des Princes and will be out for at least ten weeks. The Danish left back will be replaced by Nick Viergever for Sunday’s match in the Kyocera Stadium. “That’s our intention”, said De Boer.
Ajax’s coach is counting on a hot afternoon in The Hague. “Definitely in terms of atmosphere. I’m reading everywhere that this is the match of the year for them.” And then, grinning: “But that’s true for pretty much every club that Ajax plays against.”
De Boer was asked if Ajax will gain reinforcements during the winter break. His answer was a definite no. “If we bring in new players, it won’t be until the summer.” De Boer is considering bringing a few A-juniors to the training camp in Qatar. Recently, Abdelhak Nouri, Donny van de Beek and Vaclav Cerny have been training with the team. “Of course we’re thinking about it. But it needs to be functional. It doesn’t make sense to take 28 men and then play an eleven against eleven match. Should a spot open up, then you think of taking that kind of young guy. These guys, who have made themselves noticed in the last trainings, would then be considered.”
If Ajax wins in The Hague, the team can take over the lead from PSV. The top match between PSV and Feyenoord has been moved to Tuesday, because Eindhoven will need to conclude its discontinued European game against Estoril on Friday. “It’s always nice to be in the lead. Our intention is to put pressure on PSV. If we win against ADO we can look forward to that match from a good position.”
KNVB’s decision to move the match gives De Boer mixed feelings. “I think it’s the right decision, because I feel that everyone should be treated the same way. But I would have preferred for that match to be played on Sunday. Now they’ll have more days to rest.”