Ajax will start the season with the same goalkeepers, because ‘last season was just bad luck’

NOS Football

  • Sam Porskamp

    Follows Ajax on behalf of NOS Sport

  • Sam Porskamp

    Follows Ajax on behalf of NOS Sport

Ajax is busy strengthening itself in various positions, but nothing seems to change below the bar. The goalkeepers Remko Pasveer (38), Maarten Stekelenburg (39) and Jay Gorter (22) will also compete with each other this season. Despite the emergency measures due to the many injuries of last year.

“Last season was just bad luck,” said new coach Alfred Schreuder as a reason not to go on the transfer market for a keeper.

AP

Remko Pasveer, Jay Gorter and Maarten Stekelenburg at a training camp in Austria last year

Schreuder closed the traditional training camp in De Lutte last weekend with a big defeat against the German Paderborn (2-5). It was mainly a week for Erik ten Hag’s successor to see talent at work due to the absence of the internationals.

He said about his young keeper Gorter: “I am not a fan of naming names, but I think he has kept a good game.”

Gorter scored five goals against Paderborn and did not look good with the last goal, but also distinguished himself with a number of good saves. He completed the ninety minutes against the Germans.

AP

Jay Gorter in action against Paderborn

Pasveer is still recovering from a last operation on his hand – it is expected that he will be able to train fully again soon – and Stekelenburg had dropped out earlier that day with a foot injury.

Schreuder: “I assume it’s nothing serious. If something happens, you always have to wait a few days. We’ll just wait and see what comes out.”

Risk

Although things seem to be going well with Stekelenburg, it does raise the question: isn’t it a big risk to start the season with these three keepers? “You never know, but the question is quite negative”, Schreuder parried. “I understand what you mean, but last season it was just very unfortunate.”

Alfred Schreuder discussed the goalkeeper battle at Ajax at his first press conference on Friday.

Goalkeeper malheur Ajax last year no reason for action: ‘Was just bad luck’

Ajax had to deal with a major goalkeeper problem last year. The football season had barely started when Stekelenburg dropped out with serious hip and groin complaints, which cost him the rest of the 2021/2022 season.

Second goalkeeper Pasveer then took over and did surprisingly well. The veteran who came over from Vitesse turned out to be a reliable closing post and barely conceded a goal.

But in the Champions League game against Benfica, he got injured while warming up. He still managed to finish the game, but later it turned out that he had broken his finger.

Goalkeeper malheur complete

When third keeper Gorter also turned out to be injured in the same warm-up, the goalkeeper’s malheur was complete. Ajax had to fall back on the unmotivated André Onana, who had actually already said goodbye, and attracted the clubless Przemyslaw Tyton as an alternative.

Far from ideal, then, but this season Ajax dares it with the young Gorter and the ‘oldies’ Stekelenburg and Pasveer, the latter seeming to have an edge over the rest. “Obviously, when things happen on the road, you know you have to shift gears,” said Schreuder. “But basically these three guys are great keepers when they’re fit.”