Ajax director, Edwin van der Sar revealed the reason they are bringing in some youngsters regularly before the Europa League quarter-final with Roma.
The first leg of the Europa League quarter-final is set to be played in Amsterdam at 19.00 GMT.
“The history of Ajax has always been to play with 18 or 19-year-olds, so tonight is no different,”
ex-goalkeeper Van Der Sar explained toSky Sport Italia
Maarten Stekelenburg is out due to injury, Andre Onana is suspended, and therefore the 21-year-old Kjell Scherpen defends the goal this evening.
“We signed him two years ago, he went on loan for a year and learned a great deal. We have faith in him, he played three games for the Dutch Under-21 side in the European Championships.
“Onana is one of the best goalkeepers in Europe, Stekelenburg has a lot of experience, but Scherpen is very talented and it’s a great opportunity for him.”
Van Der Sar was asked howAjax
keep churning out this endless supply of young talents.
“Money is the difference between countries. The top five leagues have considerably more money than in Holland, so we know that players here will have three or four years, then move on.
“We’ve been raising our level too, as we brought in players like Daley Blind, Davy Klaaassen, and Devyne Rensch because they had more experience.
“However, in the Eredivisie, you just don’t tend to find players who are 29, 30 or more, they have already moved on.”
Roma ace, Francesco Totti famously defeated Van Der Sar with a chipped penalty in the Euro 2000 semi-final.
“You can go right, left or centre to score a goal. I think Holland were the better team in the second half, but we made mistakes and it went to penalties. That’s it.”