Who would have ever thought that a unpopular team from the Netherlands kicked out Real Madrid from the UEFA Champions League? The name of this small but strong team from the Netherlands is AFC Ajax. This name stands for Amsterdamsche Football Club Ajax, and as its name says, it was founded in Amsterdam 119 years ago, in 1900. It is the most successful clubs in the Netherlands with 33 Eredivisie titles, which is the Dutch Soccer league, and 18 KNVB Cups, which is known as the Dutch Cup. Within their most popular achievements, we can find the 1995 Intercontinental Cup, 1995 UEFA Super Cup, and the 1995 Champions League.
What makes Ajax a unique club is the fact that they focus on hiring young players with a bright future. Ajax has several youth programs in many parts of the world such as in South Africa, with the name of Ajax Cape Town, or in the United States, with the name of Ajax America, which their main goal is to find future soccer stars and start training them in order to play in AFC Ajax team, or to be sold later on. Several soccer legends such as Johan Cruyff, Edwin van der Sar, Dennis Bergkamp, Rafael van der Vaart, Marco van Basten, Wesley Sneijder started playing as young players with a bright future in AFC Ajax and then became outstanding soccer figures from the Netherlands. In the current team, things have not changed at all. They keep hiring future soccer promises. With an average of 24 years in the first team, young stars such as Frenkie de Jong with 21 years, or Matthijs de Ligt, the captain of the team, who is 19 years old, are starting to stand out in the soccer world.
This team, filled with young stars, destroyed Real Madrid in a recent match of the UEFA Champions League and is in the second position in the Dutch league. Ajax type of game is compared with the one of FC Barcelona. From my point of view, when I see Ajax playing, I see the old FC Barcelona of Pep Guardiola. Ajax plays passing the ball, not hurrying, but taking advantage of any opportunity they have. In my opinion, that’s why Ajax is doing so good in the tournaments they are playing right now.