Ajax’s women’s team has definitely taken shape. Marleen Molenaar, manager of Ajax women’s football, is satisfied with the women’s team selection. “We’ve carefully sought a good balance for the team”, she said on Ajax.nl. The Ajax women’s team will play this season in the BeNe League.
“We’ve carefully sought a good balance for the team, in terms of positions and experience, combined with youthful talent. Five players join from the talent team of the Centrum voor Topsport en Onderwijs (CTO) – the centre for top sport and education - which has previously worked with Ajax. But Donna van Rossum also joins our selection. At sixteen years old, she’s the youngest of the group. We were also able to count on the enthusiasm of two players who, just last year, were still abroad. Petra Hogewoning is coming from Fc Duisberg. She had said that she would only leave Germany if she could play for Ajax. It’s a better match for her anyway, considering her involvement with the Dutch national team, which is currently playing qualifying matches for the upcoming European Championships in 2013 in Sweden. Forward Linda Bakker has played in Los Angeles for a year, and was considering staying on for an additional year. But when she received news about Ajax, she wanted to come to Amsterdam straight away. We’ve had that kind of positive signal from several players.”
“It was also attractive for several players from a logistical point of view. Eshly Bakker, Tessel Middag en Leonne Stentler played for ADO Den Haag last year, but are currently living and studying in Amsterdam. For them, besides the fact that it’s a dream to play in Amsterdam, it wasn’t a difficult choice from a practical perspective. A few players join from FC Utrecht, among whom Carmen Manduapessy. She lives and studies in Amsterdam as well, and was injured for a long time. She was only able to play two games at the start of last season, but is a very talented player and we’re happy to give her a chance”, says Molenaar.
The team was gathered in the Amsterdam ArenA last week for the first time. The women were received in Ajax 1’s locker room, and for the brand new Ajax members, a jersey, personalised with name and number, hung above each seat.
The players report back to Ajax next week. In the meantime, several Ajax players have interland commitments, as others continue to enjoy holidays. The first training is scheduled for mid-July, and then women’s football at Ajax really begins. Competition play starts on August 24th. They will play at De Toekomst sports complex, and Friday evening (7.30p.m.) will be the fixed evening for home competition games.
Photo 1: The players listen carefully to the welcome speech.
Photo 2: Internationals Anouk Hoogendijk, Daphne Koster and Desiree van Lunteren will play with Ajax as of the new season.