In the third match of the preseason Ajax got a little more opposition from amateur side Achilles '12. The side from Amsterdam won with 'only' 0-9. Steven Pienaar, Tomás Galásek and Zlatan Ibrahimovic did not play, and neither did Sander Boschker and Johnny Heitinga.
Just like on Monday, Ajax created many chances, to the delight of coach Ronald Koeman. ,,Although the opponent was a bit stronger than in the last matches, we could have scored twenty goals. We do need to be sharper'', the coach said afterwards.
But after the third friendly against an amateur side, the coach is pleased more and more every day. The players seem to be fitter and stronger than last year at this time. ,,Jelle van Damme is one of the guys who have gotten stronger. He is still developing. He needs to be calmer in possession of the ball. We have a lot of confidence in him. In a year, or two, he can become very good'', Koeman said about the young Belgian defender. ,,Compared to a year ago, I see much more football in this team, and that with all those young players. So far, nothing has been disappointing'', Koeman complimented his squad.
Four of Ajax's nine goals were scored by Wesley Sonck. The Belgian striker seems to find his way with his new team. Koeman: ,,Sonck is a striker who goes deep without the ball. The other players are getting used to that, just as Sonck is getting used to playing the Ajax game. He is very proficient. Ibrahimovic is a completely different player, he wants the ball in his feet. I am anxious to play them together soon."
In the second half there was a new face in Ajax's team. His name is Nicolai Mitea and he is on try-out with Ajax. ,,There was room in the squad, so we brought him with us. This way, we get to see him play'', Koeman explained the 18 year-old Romanian's presence. Mitea, who played at the left wing, showed some nice moves, but was also visibly out of shape.