De Boer gives Tete chance against FC Twente

De Boer gives Tete chance against FC Twente

Kenny Tete will be on the squad of Sunday’s home game against FC Twente as right back. The Amsterdam native will replace the injured Ricardo van Rhijn, as Frank de Boer announced at Friday’s press conference. “Joël Veltman is also a good option for right back, but Kenny’s doing well right now. He’ll be starting at the right back position.”

De Boer also said that he’s gradually starting to feel good again. To his satisfaction, Ajax posted a (close) victory on Sunday away at Go Ahead Eagles. “I saw a fighting Ajax, one that wanted to win at all costs. That’s where it starts. It gives some courage for the next matches.”

These are difficult times. De Boer has admitted that he has had better times with Ajax. “Each year, you want to get the maximum out of a club and, for a club like Ajax, this means winning the championship. If we go through a rough patch, we get criticized and I will need to deal with that. But I’m not going to be intimidated; I’m still the same Frank de Boer as I was at the beginning. It’s also a question of the tide turning. I feel like the guys understand that.”

De Boer is still convinced that he can reach the Ajax players. “I think the chemistry is still there.” And therefore, according to him, it’s just a matter of time before things turn around for Ajax. “When we’re in good form, we can play dominant and compelling football, I’m convinced of that. We’re searching for our form right now. We have less possession, so the play is less compelling.”

Ajax’s competitor for Sunday, FC Twente, isn’t in great shape, either. De Boer sees more similarities. “There are two teams who enjoy having possession and want to have good position play. We can’t let Twente get into their game. With players like Ziyech, Mokhtar and Mokotjo, Tapia who is doing pretty well and Castaignos who is always a threat, they remain a good team.”
The match against Twente marks the start of a busy period. Ajax will play five matches in fifteen days. It will be a puzzle for De Boer, considering that his team has quite a long sick list. “We need to properly evaluate which guys can play all five games and who will need a break. But I think we have a group who is ready for this.”

Home games against Twente are always especially charged for De Boer. On May 15 2011, Ajax won its coveted third star. After that, three titles followed. “Time has flown since then. I don’t even realize that we’ve won four titles. And there’s really no time to enjoy it, because you need to move on straight away. I’m even busy with it during my holidays.”

It was noted in the press conference that from the current team, only Nicolai Boilesen played in that championship match from four years ago. De Boer isn’t fazed by the big turnover. “If you’re successful, you’re in demand. And then you know that the best players will leave. It’s the same situation with almost every Dutch club that does well.”