Wednesday, 06 March 2019 10:47

Why Ajax have set a precedent for Scottish teams in Europe

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Last night Ajax sensationally defeated Real Madrid 4-1 (5-3 on aggregate) at the Bernabeu.

In recent times, Ajax who are historically a huge club have been defeated by the finances of modern football but yesterday they obliterated the 13-time European Champions who were previously kings of Europe for a staggering 1,012 days. In other words they were going for their 4th consecutive Champions League trophy this year.

What makes the result even more incredible is that the Ajax Director, Marc Overmars recently stated afterwards that their wage budget for the first, second and youth team is equivelent of Gareth Bale's approximate £650,000 per week.

It just goes to show you that money can only take you so far but if you have a club that invests in youth and promotes home-grown players with the right attitude, literally everybody wins. 

Ajax have been exactly doing that and last night's performance will obviously attract attention from bigger clubs but this is a recipe for success in the long term. Frankie De Jong will be a huge miss as he ran that midfield against Modric and Casemiro but €75m from Barcelona is not a bad sum at all to re-invest in the club.

Every club in Scotland who are competing in Europe should take positives from this as I've heard every year that they don't have the financial funds to compete against the very elite in Europe. Like I said before  money doesn't mean a full squad is happy. Just look at Real Madrid, they've been knocked out of the Champions League, Copa Del Rey and lost any chance of winning the La Liga. All in less than a week. 

I'm still under no illusion that it's still a challenging prospect but even doing the basics right can make it slightly easier.

When Aberdeen FC defeated Real Madrid 2-1 in the 1983 European Cup Winner's Cup Final, Alfredo Di Stefano said "Aberdeen have what money can't buy; a soul, a team spirit built in a family tradition."



Last modified on Wednesday, 06 March 2019 12:30

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