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Eight important moments that brought Ajax the 36th national title | NOW

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Ajax is champion of the Netherlands for the 36th time on Wednesday thanks to a 5-0 victory over sc Heerenveen. These are eight important moments that helped the Amsterdam club to the title.

September 1, 2021: Don’t build, but continue to build

In 2019 Matthijs de Ligt and Frenkie de Jong left and in 2020 Hakim Ziyech, Donny van de Beek and Joël Veltman went. Again and again, trainer Erik ten Hag had to build a new team, until the summer of 2021.

Miraculously, no one from Ajax’s basic team has been bought away when the transfer market closes on August 31, while the selection does get a potential basic player with Orange international Steven Berghuis. Ten Hag does not have to build, it is mainly a matter of building on the previous successes under his leadership.

Erik ten Hag on the training field in preparation for the season.


Erik ten Hag on the training field in preparation for the season.

Erik ten Hag on the training field in preparation for the season.

Photo: AP

October 19, 2021: Almost 38-year-old Pasveer keeps better than ever

Remko Pasveer writes history. The Ajax veteran is the first goalkeeper ever against Borussia Dortmund to save three shots from Erling Haaland in a Champions League match. Pasveer, who will celebrate his 38th birthday on November 8, 2021, thus removes the last doubt and grows into one of the best Ajax players of the season.

With Pasveer on target, it turns out to be almost impossible for Eredivisie clubs to score against Ajax. In the twenty league matches of the tukker, who was no more than an ideal reserve keeper at PSV from 2014 to 2017, the Ten Hag team only conceded four hits. How good Pasveer is is also apparent when he breaks his finger in March and André Onana returns between the posts. Where Ajax concedes a goal every 450 minutes with Pasveer, the Cameroonian hits it every 54 minutes.

Remko Pasveer appears to be an excellent replacement for the suspended André Onana and the injured Maarten Stekelenburg.


Remko Pasveer appears to be an excellent replacement for the suspended André Onana and the injured Maarten Stekelenburg.

Remko Pasveer appears to be an excellent replacement for the suspended André Onana and the injured Maarten Stekelenburg.

Photo: Pro Shots

October 24, 2021: Humiliation PSV in the ArenA

These are the days when the discussion flares up whether Ajax has outgrown the Eredivisie. Pierre van Hooijdonk makes in Studio Football the comparison with Bayern Munich in Germany and even thinks that the team from Amsterdam can win the Champions League.

In that Champions League, Ajax just won 4-0 against Borussia Dortmund, after which PSV is defeated in the Eredivisie with even more striking figures (5-0). The gap with the people of Eindhoven grows to four points. “And I don’t see Ajax losing many points this season,” said Van Hooijdonk. “Which team in Europe is playing better football now?”

Steven Berghuis cheers after the 1-0 against PSV.


Steven Berghuis cheers after the 1-0 against PSV.

Steven Berghuis cheers after the 1-0 against PSV.

Photo: AP

January 23, 2022: ‘Give the cup to them today

It’s almost a national debate: does the ball hit the sideline? Or is it completely over it? There is no camera perpendicular above the line in the Philips Stadium, so VAR Rob Dieperink cannot say with certainty that right back Noussair Mazraoui’s goal should be disallowed. And so Ajax wins the top match against PSV with 1-2.

Give the cup to them today“, PSV coach Roger Schmidt shouts furiously. It will not get that far, but Ajax will take over the lead from the Eindhoven team and will not relinquish it.

Noussair Mazraoui’s goal remains standing and Ajax wins against PSV.


Noussair Mazraoui's goal remains standing and Ajax wins against PSV.

Noussair Mazraoui’s goal remains standing and Ajax wins against PSV.

Photo: Getty Images

February 9, 2022: Case Overmars has no influence on the field

Ajax is on fire. Director of football affairs Marc Overmars has just left because of sexually transgressive behavior and the question is whether the club management had not been aware of the abuses for much longer. Meanwhile, general manager Edwin van der Sar hides from the media and that feeds the speculation.

There is only one place in the ArenA where Overmars’ departure does not appear to have any impact in the short term and that is on the field. On Wednesday evening, February 9, three days after the departure of Overmars, the Ten Hag team whirls 5-0 past Vitesse in the quarterfinals of the KNVB cup tournament. Four days later, it is also 5-0 in the Eredivisie against FC Twente.

Sébastien Haller scores twice in the quarterfinals of the KNVB Cup against Vitesse.


Sébastien Haller scores twice in the quarterfinals of the KNVB Cup against Vitesse.

Sébastien Haller scores twice in the quarterfinals of the KNVB Cup against Vitesse.

Photo: AP

March 20, 2022: Fighting and rolling to win

After seventeen years, Feyenoord can finally hope for a win in the Johan Cruijff ArenA. Fifteen minutes before the end, the team from Rotterdam lead 1-2 in the Classic, but Ajax still strikes in the final phase. Thanks to goals from Dusan Tadic (78th minute) and Antony (86th minute), the leader fights for a 3-2 lead, after which everything is pulled out to draw the three points.

The ‘injured’ Antony rushes into the field, where he is pushed to the ground by Tadic to force injury treatment. The crazy spectacle gives the Brazilian his second yellow card and therefore the red. But in the meantime, time is ticking away in Ajax’s favour. This is how Ten Hag’s team fights and rolls to win.

Antony is injured on the ground during the Classic against Feyenoord.


Antony is injured on the ground during the Classic against Feyenoord.

Antony is injured on the ground during the Classic against Feyenoord.

Photo: Getty Images

April 23, 2022: Brobbey saves Ajax

It’s not running anymore. Until the end of February, Ajax swings almost weekly, but then it loses to Go Ahead Eagles, Benfica puts an end to the Champions League adventure and PSV is too strong in the KNVB cup final. And if Ajax does win, then it is barely. Also on a visit to NEC, the leader struggles and is still in the final phase.

The title fight looks set to get even more exciting, until substitute Brian Brobbey pushes off the 88th NEC defender Rodrigo Guth and hits diagonally from the turn (0-1). It is not the only time that the twenty-year-old Brobbey is worth gold for Ajax. The mercenary from RB Leipzig also scores important goals against FC Utrecht, PSV and AZ.

Bryan Brobbey shoots Ajax to a 0-1 victory against NEC.


Bryan Brobbey shoots Ajax to a 0-1 victory against NEC.

Bryan Brobbey shoots Ajax to a 0-1 victory against NEC.

Photo: Pro Shots

May 8, 2022: Disaster scenario will not come true for once

On 8 May 2011, Ajax lost the KNVB Cup final against FC Twente, on 8 May 2016 the title was lost at De Graafschap and on 8 May 2019 the semi-final of the Champions League against Tottenham Hotspur ended in a nightmare. It all comes along in the run-up to ‘Super Sunday’ in the Eredivisie and makes Ajax fans fear the worst.

It seems to go wrong again on May 8 when Ajax gives away a lead against AZ, but in the final phase Edson Álvarez saves the leader with a striking header (2-2). Then Ajax must hope that PSV does not beat Feyenoord. A questionable penalty for the Rotterdam team deep in extra time breaks the number two (2-2). For example, 8 May is finally not a black day for Ajax, which three days later is national champion for the 36th time due to a victory over sc Heerenveen.

Edson Álvarez prevents a defeat against AZ by header.


Edson Álvarez prevents a defeat against AZ by header.

Edson Álvarez prevents a defeat against AZ by header.

Photo: Pro Shots

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Assistant Ron Jans leaves FC Twente: ‘Other ideas about technical matters’ | Football

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Ulderink: „I have enjoyed working for FC Twente for two years. Led by Ron Jans, we have worked hard with the technical staff to achieve the results we have achieved, with European football being the ultimate prize. During the season I realized that I have different ideas about certain technical matters.”

To continue: ,,That’s not a bad thing, as long as it remains workable for me and I don’t have to make any concessions to myself. The latter was no longer the case and that is why I think I should take my responsibility and have decided to leave the club. I thank everyone for the two great years at FC Twente and wish the staff, players and supporters all the best for the new season.”

Technical director Jan Streuer is disappointed with the departure: „Ron Jans, the other members of the technical staff, the players and I are very sorry that Andries has taken this step. He no longer feels out of place. Then we have no choice but to respect his decision. Of course we wish Andries every success in his further career.”

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Program and results of the play-offs for promotion and European football | NOW

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Although the regular season in the Eredivisie and Keuken Kampioen is over, not all decisions have been made yet. In the play-offs, promotion/relegation and European football are still played. These are the program and the results.

Play-offs promotion/relegation

First round:
Monday 9 May, 8 pm: De Graafschap-FC Eindhoven 1-1
Tuesday 10 May, 6.45 pm: NAC Breda-ADO The Hague 1-2
Tuesday 10 May, 9 pm: Excelsior Roda JC 2-2

Friday May 13, 8 pm: FC Eindhoven-De Graafschap 3-1
Saturday 14 May, 4.30 pm: ADO The Hague-NAC Breda 2-1
Saturday 14 May, 8 p.m.: Roda JC-Excelsior 0-2

Semi-finals:
Tuesday 17 May, 8 p.m.: ADO The Hague-FC Eindhoven (D)
Wednesday 18 May, 6.45 pm: Excelsior Heracles Almelo (E)

Saturday 21 May, 4.30 pm: FC Eindhoven-ADO The Hague (D)
Saturday 21 May, 8 pm:
Heracles Almelo-Excelsior (E)

Final:
Tuesday 24 May, 8 pm: Winner D-Winner E
Sunday, May 29, 6 p.m.: Winner E-Winner D

* Champion FC Emmen and number two FC Volendam have been promoted directly to the Eredivisie. PEC Zwolle and Willem II are relegated to the Kitchen Champion Division. Heracles finished sixteenth in the Eredivisie.
During the play-offs, the team that has finished highest in the ranking starts with an away game.

European football play-offs

Semi-finals:
Thursday 19 May, 6.45 pm:
sc Heerenveen-AZ (A)
Thursday 19 May, 9 pm: FC Utrecht-Vitesse (B)

Sunday 22 May, 2.30 pm: AZ-sc Heerenveen (A)
Sunday, May 22, 6 p.m.: Vitesse FC Utrecht (B)

Final:
Thursday, May 26, 8 p.m.: Winner A-Winner B
Sunday 29 May, 2.30 pm: Winner B-Winner A

The team that finished highest in the Eredivisie starts the play-offs with an away game. The winner of the play-offs qualifies for the second qualifying round of the Conference League.

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Giorgio Chiellini gets a public change after 17 minutes and hands the baton to Matthijs de Ligt

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A few days after announcing his retirement from Juventus, seasoned defender Giorgio Chiellini (37) received a crowd change after 17 minutes in his last home game for the club.

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