Danny Blind gave his reaction on the draw for the preliminary round of the Champions League, in which Ajax were matched with the winner of the series between Dinamo Tblisi and Brøndby IF. Since the Danes have won the first leg of the tie by 2-0 in Georgia, Ajax will likely face Brøndby. ,,Not an easy opponent'', Blind said. ,,But on the other hand, we cannot complain.''
,,I haven't followed Brøndby the past years. However, I do know that Michael Laudrup is the coach, so that will be a great reunion'', said Blind who was Laudrup's teammate at Ajax in the 1997-1998 season. ,,I know Michael as a pleasant person and an excellent footballer. It will be great to see him again.'' Laudrup has been coach of the reigning champion and cup winner of Denmark since July of 2002.
,,Brøndby play a kind of 4-3-3, but with wingers who play withdrawn'', Blind said. ,,I am not saying that we are really happy with this draw or that we will prevail for sure, but it could have been worse. The circumstances are good too. Denmark can be reached easily, also to scout them beforehand, the facilities there are fine and it is also good that we play away first.''
Blind: ,,I understand that Brøndby, where Johan Elmander plays an important role, is going through a good period and they have done well last season. It is a team that wants to play, and that is good for us. We are going for qualification and nothing less.'' Last season Brøndby won their tenth national championship and fifth cup. Their best European result came in 1991, when the yellow and blues reched the semi-final of the UEFA Cup. In 1997 the team reached the quarter final of that tournament. Brøndby reached that same phase in the European Champions' Cup in 1987. Only once did they compete in the UEFA Champions League. In 1998 the team could not get past the first round, despite a 2-1 victory against Bayern München. After that win, Brønby won no further points.
Blind expects Brøndby to defeat Dinamo Tblisi, but leaves nothing to chance. ,,We will also follow Tblisi, in case of an upset.''