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Meyer sees opportunities despite "European leadership" in Ajax: "space to play football"

Meyer sees opportunities despite “European leadership” in Ajax: “space to play football”

Rogier Meijer is looking forward to his Goffert’s NEC match against Ajax. The Nijmegen coach sees an upward trend in his team’s level. In addition, he is interested in Ajax’s (attacking) qualities, although he also sees opportunities. “There is some decay.”

“We have to create more goals than Ajax, and that seems easier to me,” Meier joked during a press moment on Friday. They have shown in recent weeks that they are back on their feet. They certainly have top Dutch players up front, and maybe even top European players. However, there is still some decline: they concede some spaces in which you can play football, and they concede a fair number of goals. So there are opportunities there.”

“We also showed ourselves last year at home against Ajax, so we definitely have a chance. It’s definitely good that we showed in the two games against Alkmaar and Twente that we can achieve something as a team. We will also need that on Sunday, both in scoring and preventing goals. This is essential To win against Ajax.


NEC have not won in the Eredivisie for some time. The last five matches were draws, while there was often more potential. Does this feeling also prevail in selection? “I don’t have that idea, but I definitely have the feeling that we should have made more of it against the Go Ahead Eagles. If you take your chance against them and win, you’ll have a bigger lead than a draw every time. But I don’t feel like they’re in the dressing room all the time.” They look at the score and think ‘damn’. In three games and five minutes, things can be completely different. Then the winter break comes and then the balance can be raised. We are becoming more and more stable. We are giving fewer chances, although we still concede a lot. “Of goals. If we continue this streak, we will definitely win matches.”

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Enough has happened already at Ajax this season. John van’t Schip is already the third coach of the Amsterdam team. “Since he arrived there has been more clarity and fewer changes. The style of play and the players who play it are very similar. That always helps because you get used to it. I think if you see who played against Olympique Marseille, you will find that they all have the qualities of the Dutch top. It makes sense for them to win In the Dutch League.


A number of Amsterdam players are starting to improve, especially up front. “Robbie has the advantage, he scores more and it is important. In addition, you see that Berghuis, except for yesterday, feels better. The role of Bergwijn, who has a little more freedom on the left and a little more in midfield, plays sometimes. They have enough qualities and they will progress Definitely towards the top four.

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“Vitesse had too much space against Ajax and made it 1-1. A beautiful goal and in my opinion it was disallowed for inexplicable reasons. There were moments when I thought Vitesse would hurt Ajax. In the end, it didn’t show in the score. I think Van’t Schip was too “Very angry at the end of the first half of that game, as he himself pointed out. Especially when they don’t have the ball or lose it. We have to take advantage of that.”

We’ve shown some of Proby, but everyone knows him and his qualities. He’s not in the Dutch national team for nothing. The moment you enter into a duel with him, things will get difficult. We discuss it together. Preventing that is the team’s job. “The lines must be closed, so there must be pressure on the ball.”

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Photos: Rob Coopers and Orange Pictures