After the disappointment against PSV, coach Danny Blind had to wait until last Thursday before he had a full squad again. One whole training session with the entire team proved to be insufficient to defeat sc Heerenveen. Ajax lost 2-1.
Ajax had a difficult preparation. Of the starting eleven against Heerenveen, only Maxwell, Lindgren and Rosales had been in Amsterdam the whole week. The latter had just recovered from an injury. All others went to play with their national teams.
Blind already had seen it coming. ,,If you look at all matches in a season seperately, you know PSV, Heerenveen away, AZ and Feyenoord are going to be difficult, to say the least. If these matches then come one after the other, it doesn't look good.''
Ajax started poorly at sc Heerenveen, but after Steven Pienaar played more offensively and Hedwiges Maduro took on Daniel Hestad defensively, it went better. After 31 minutes, Ajax took the lead. Rosales went by Jeroen Drost and Angelos Charisteas put it away beautifully, 0-1.
Ajax took the lead into halftime, but Heerenveen erased it in the second half. ,,The 1-1 was lucky", said goalkeeper Hans Vonk. From a corner - 'of which we know that is one of their strenghts', Blind said - the ball ended up right before Marcel Seip. The Heerenveen defender made it 1-1.
,,We were thinking backwards too much", Blind said after the match. ,,In a phase when Heerenveen plays opportunistically, you have to think forward. We had difficulty with that and that suited Heerenveen.''
Three minutes from the end, it all went wrong. Ajax lost the ball on their own half and substitute Georgios Samaras was allowed to score. ,,The 2-1 was just dumb'', said Hans Vonk, who played against his former team. ,,We lost on two moments of which we know Heerenveen is dangerous."
And so, Ajax have not earned a single point under new coach Danny Blind. ,,It might sound like a cop-out when I say that this is not something sudden. But I will try to let getting results and working toward the future go hand in hand. Change will come with turbulence. We have to qualify for the UEFA Cup as soon as possible and work toward a team from there. I look toward the day after tomorrow more than to tomorrow. Ajax have been struggling for too long. We have to go in a new direction. That will cost us time and points'', Blind concluded.