Ajax has ended its training camp in De Lutte with a big win against FC Emmen. Frank de Boer’s team was too strong for the club, which ended last season in last place of the Jupiler League, by winning 0-5. Thanks to Kolbeinn Sigthórsson, Siem de Jong, Davy Klaassen, and two own goals, Ajax posted its third win in Drenthe.
The match against FC Emmen also acted as a closing ceremony for the De Lutte training camp. In the Univé Stadium, which was almost sold out, Ajax could show where they stood after a week packed with training and a practice match against VV Oldenzaal (0-11). After a week of fantastic weather, rain started to pour down during the drive to Drenthe. Once in Emmen, the training camp ended the way Ajax had become accustomed to during the past few days: sunny.
Theo Janssen played his first minutes of the new season in Emmen. After successful surgery on his nose, he joined group training on Monday. In addition to Janssen, midfield consisted of captain Siem de Jong and Vurnon Anita. De Boer: “Siem is one of the candidates for captain. I’ll most likely make a decision this week.”
In front, De Boer chose for the attacking trio of Aras Özbiliz, Kolbeinn Sigthórsson, and Viktor Fischer. In the back, Toby Alderweireld was in the centre, flanked by Daley Blind, who stood in for Jan Vertonghen.
In contrast to last year – when a tired Ajax finally eked out a 0-1 win – Emmen was defeated with ease after an intense week in De Lutte. Aras Özbiliz was the architect of the first goal in the eighth minute. The forward, who scored four times in last Wednesday’s match, sent the ball into the home team’s goal via Emmen defender Kelvin Maynard: 0-1. Within fifteen minutes, Sigthórsson doubled the lead after De Jong had set the ball up perfectly: 0-2. Midway through the second half, it was Ajax’s number 9 who once again came close to scoring, but the crossbar stood in the way of the 0-3. The third goal was again on De Jong’s radar. From a difficult angle, he sent a hard shot past keeper Harm Zeinstra: 0-3.
After the break, De Boer replaced the entire line-up, as he had agreed beforehand. With Jasper Cillessen between the posts, a much younger Ajax went hunting for more. The hungry youngsters were eager to prove themselves to Frank de Boer. Among the new eleven was Davy Klaassen, and the central defensive duo Joël Veltman – Stefano Denswil. Just like third keeper Mickey van der Hart, they are part of Ajax’s A selection this season. After the practice match was over, the coach announced that Mitchell Dijks and Viktor Fischer will also stay in his selection for now.
The young Ajax team raised the score to 0-4 after the break. At the start of the second half, Klaassen scored the fourth goal of the afternoon. The 19 year old midfielder reacted sharply to a half deflected shot from Roly Bonevacia. After that, it wasn’t until the closing seconds of the match that the game ended as it had started: with an own goal. On an Ajax corner, the ball ended on a rebound, after which an Emmen player gave it the last push. This gave Ajax one more goal.
“I’m very satisfied with the training camp, and this closing match. I was able to see everyone in action for 45 minutes (except Ruben Ligeon, who remained on the sidelines as a precaution). We applied pressure continuously and showed some great attacks, and with a bit of luck, the score could have been even higher. And everyone is fit, which isn’t unimportant.”