Exactly four years after being appointed as Ajax 1’s (interim) coach, Frank de Boer saw his Ajacieds destroy Willem II: 5-0. The Tilburg team was hopeless in the Amsterdam ArenA on Saturday. “We gave the crowd, who came to the ArenA faithfully, great moments”, concluded De Boer.
On Saturday against Willem II, Ajax did what they couldn’t manage to do the Sunday before against ADO Den Haag. In The Hague, the opening goal had no follow-up. The Amsterdam team’s negligence ended up costing De Boer’s team dearly in the form of a late 1-1 tie, and loss of points. “Fortunately on Saturday, we converted the 1-0 into a 2-0 lead fairly quickly”, said the satisfied Ajax coach in retrospect on the home game against Willem II. The goal counter finally stopped at 5-0. Arek Milik was Ajax’s top scorer with two goals. With this win, Ajax filled their tank with confidence leading up to the impending UEFA Champions League match against APOEL Nicosia. Shot dexterity and precision will definitely be required on Wednesday in order to earn a spot in the UEFA Europa League after the winter break.
“Willem II started out well, but we came out from under that pressure quite well”, continued De Boer in the ArenA’s press room. The quick and large lead provided the home team with peace of mind. The home game was, in theory, decided very early. The goal production and execution satisfied De Boer. “The way we won tonight will go with us on Wednesday. The duel against APOEL is very important for us.”
The Ajax coach saw his starting centre forward, Kolbeinn Sigthórsson, retire after fifteen minutes with an injury. The Icelander suffered an ankle injury, according to the diagnosis. De Boer: “Kolbeinn will probably be out for a couple of weeks. It seems to concern a muscle between his shin and ankle. It’s not a serious injury, but it’s possible to miss three weeks because of it. It’s a shame, because it was a careless move by Messaoud. And I’d rewarded Kolbeinn with the starting spot thanks to the way he’d been performing in training.”
The trainer had better news about Anwar El Ghazi. The winger was spared on Saturday, but will be available for the mid-week game. “He’s passed a good test. He’ll be there on Wednesday.” De Boer closed his press moment with the two Ajax players who made their competition debut on Saturday. “It’s great that Queensy Menig and Riechedly Bazoer have made their Eredivisie debut. I was able to bring them in at a useful moment. That’s how it’s meant to be. The point is that they’ve had their baptism by fire in the ArenA.”