Left-back Gaston Avila provides Ajax with a new shot from Grinta

Left-back Gaston Avila provides Ajax with a new shot from Grinta

Gaston Avila (left) plays for his former club Royal Antwerp, with whom he won the championship last season.Photo: Gerrit van Keelon/The Australian News Agency

During preparation, coach Maurice Stein was dissatisfied (or at most somewhat satisfied) with left-backs Owen Wendall and Anas Salaheddine. In the first play-off against Ludogorets last Thursday, Fendal was once again the favourite, but to say he has overcome his form crisis…

“There has to be a shovel at the top. It has to be better,” Stegen said over and over again about the pair. An additional problem the coach had was his inability to move with youngster Jurel Hato. He would probably do well in the side too, but he He is the only left footed center back available.Furthermore, Hato performs so well in central defense that he deserves to stay in that position.

In his search for the defensive left legs, Mislintat initially placed his cards on Japanese Hiroki Ito from Stuttgart, who usually plays in the central position. However, the German club rejected any offer from Amsterdam and Mislintat gradually turned its attention to Gaston Avila from Royal Antwerp. He’s a much more left-back than Eto’o. Good news for Hatto and fans of his style: Agile, forward-looking and confident.

Argentine X

Ajax will pay a maximum of €14.5m (including bonuses) for the 21-year-old Avila. He is the tenth Argentine in the service of Amsterdam. There was a time when South and Central American players could not find a foothold in Ajax. When Louis van Gaal was manager (2003/04), he did an analysis which showed that European footballers, and certainly those from Denmark and Belgium, had a much higher chance of being successful at a club than players from other continents.

As a coach, Van Gaal himself had bad experiences with Argentine Ivan Gabrić and Brazilian Marcio Santos. And his colleagues, who took over the leadership of Ajax after him, witnessed the failure of the Argentines Mauro Rosales, Dario Chitanic and Lisandro Magalan.

Recently, however, feelings have changed with the help of two Argentine defenders who have become pillars of the successful team and fan favourites: Nicolas Tagliafico and Lisandro Martínez. And if we want to believe the stories coming from Belgium, and from the bosom of his former club, Royal Antwerp, then Gaston Avila as a football player is a mixture of his compatriots.

What does that look like in practice? Avila enjoys Martínez’s passing, but is stubborn and reckless at times in duels like Tagliafico, who at the end of his spell with Ajax has collected as many cards as he has played good games: a lot. Unlike Tagliafico, Ávila is a less attacking full-back. He prefers to stay in his area to take care of the construction and perform his defensive tasks from there. As a defender, he is relentless. difficult. within the limits of permissible and sometimes beyond it. This is what Fendal and Saladin miss.


“Avila plays with heart, is aggressive, has a great mentality and a great personality,” Mislintat says of his recent purchase. “And he’s definitely used to winning trophies. He played for Boca Juniors and won 3 titles. Then he played for Royal Antwerp and also won 3 trophies. It’s not normal to win a lot at your age. There’s a reason for that. He knows how to do it and what it takes.”

According to the manager, Avila will be given the freedom to get back on his feet at Ajax and develop. Comparison to Tagliafico and Martinez shouldn’t get in the way. Mislintat: We can’t expect him to reciprocate right away. But he takes the Grinta.”

This is an Italian word meaning struggle and determination. At Ajax this is attributed to Latin American footballers. And with Mexicans Edson Alvarez and Jorge Sanchez gone – and on the brink of a move to FC Porto – the last bit of grenata seems to have dried up. But Avila offers another chance. (Fun detail: Alvarez was once asked what the word grinta meant to him. He had never heard of the word before.)

seventy million

Avila is Mislintat’s ninth purchase. He brought in a goalkeeper (Diant Ramage), a right-back (Jay), two central defenders (Sotalo and Jaakov Medik), a left-back (Avila), two midfielders (Branko van den Bomen and Benjamin Tahirović), and a wing-forward (Carlos Forbes). ) and the attacker (Chuba Akpom).

Ajax spent just under seventy million euros this summer. An amount that could increase in the coming years due to performance bonuses. An astronomical amount for a Dutch club, but the income from transfers, on the other hand, doubles. When it comes to trading players, Ajax is still a big club. But a person who longs for sporting success.

sacred transport

Coach Maurice Stein believes that Mohamed Quddous played his last match for Ajax. “Yes, it looks like that,” he said after his team’s away victory over Ludogorets in the Europa League qualifiers (1-4).

Kudos scored no less than three goals in Bulgaria and got a massive change from Steijn. “He deserved it. It’s great that he’s stayed sober despite all the transfer problems. He’s one of our best players. He can score a goal, give an assist and he’s very strong. He can handle so many positions and he’s also very good in the group.”

West Ham United are on the verge of taking over Kudos, despite the club having received competition from Saudi Arabia, according to Sky Sports. Ajax is asking more than 40 million euros for the Ghanaian.

Kudos himself also believes that the match in Bulgaria was his last for Ajax, as he told the RTL 7 camera. “We still have to see what happens in the coming days. I have no more control over that. Negotiations are continuing and no agreement has been reached yet.” “.

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