Ajax CEO Edwin van der Sar has insisted that the club is happy to let players leave for bigwigs like Barcelona, Real Madrid or Manchester United.
Speaking in an interview with The Athletic, as relayed by the Daily Mail, Edwin van der Sar, who is the chief executive of Dutch giants Ajax, has said that the club is ‘honoured’ to sell their players to European giants such as Barcelona or Manchester United.
Having been in the post since 2016, van der Sar has overseen sales of some of Ajax’s top players to giants across Europe during this time. Only this past summer, Chelsea signed Hakim Ziyech from the Dutch heavyweights, while Manchester United secured the services of Donny van de Beek in a deal worth £40 million.
Barcelona, having spent a huge sum to sign Frenkie de Jong from Ajax last year, raided the club again earlier this year for the signing of full-back Sergino Dest. The Dutch outfit also lost star defender Matthijs de Ligt to Juventus in the summer of 2019.
And, van der Sar, in his interview, insisted that Ajax feel pride at their players being scouted by the bigwigs of Europe and are happy to do transfer deals with them.
“It sounds strange but we are almost honoured if Real Madrid, Barcelona and Manchester United are coming for our players. Of course, I’d rather keep them but, having been a player myself, if you give us great service, league titles and commitment, then we think with you and set you along for the next part of your career,” the Manchester United legend said.
“We know the ambition of the players and if our players are not good enough to be scouted by the top clubs, then we are doing something wrong.”
Although, the former Manchester United goalkeeper added that the club always hopes that the players who are sold come back to the club at some point later in their career, either as players or part of the backroom staff.
“But we hope that you come back to Ajax and play for another one or two years, come onto our coaching staff or be like myself and Marc [Overmars],” van der Sar said.
Ajax, over the years, have produced some top players who have gone on to make a huge name for themselves in Europe. And the giants of European football are unlikely to stop raiding the Amsterdam Arena for special talents, with Perr Schuurs being linked with Liverpool of late, while fellow centre-back Lisandro Martinez is on the radars of Barcelona.