What Keizer needs to do to ‘save’ this season

When I’m writing this, it’s late in the evening of Tuesday August 29th and as of now, it appears Ajax are finished on the transfer market. Pretty much everyone agreed after the Rosenborg-disaster that we need a left back, a creative midfielder and a left winger, so, naturally, we bought Siem de Jong. However, I won’t be talking about Siem, because he is a likable guy and I feel he deserves a fair chance before I write him off. However, I do have something to say about Marcel Keizer.

When Keizer was appointed, I was extremely disappointed with the board of directors (as I still am), but I decided that wasn’t his fault so I would give him a proper chance. I still think he could be a decent manager for this team, as long as he musters the courage to go three at the back with both Dolberg and the unleashed Klaas-Jan Huntelaar op top. However, our disappointing start is largely due to his own errors.

I won’t analyze too much about the substitution he made after the 1-2 in Norway, even though he completely disjointed the squad by it. However, he has completely bombed his starting eleven in the game against Rosenborg, handing another start to Lasse Schöne who is unable to make fifty useful minutes a game. He clinically ignores David Neres for whatever reason, but keeps playing Justin Kluivert outside his preferred position, keeps ignoring the terrible games Amin Younes puts in and even rehabilitates Vaclav Cerny, who still has yet to play three good games in Ajax 1.

It’s not entirely his fault he has to play with absolute trainwreck Mitchell Dijks on left back, it’s not his fault that our fans are way too critical of Joel Veltman just because he doesn’t slide into every challenge and is not seven feet tall. It’s also not his fault Matthijs de Ligt is left to drown because Marc Overmars doesn’t know what the job description of being a Director of Football looks like. But with decisions like these, Keizer puts himself in a way too difficult position.

If he decides to go three at the back in most games in the Eredivisie, he would solve a lot of those issues. Frenkie de Jong would provide the necessary abilities to divide the play from our own half. Also, playing Dolberg behind a static striker like Huntelaar would take a lot of pressure off of the struggling Dane. Ziyech and Van de Beek would be as dynamic as the game allows them to be, and the defense could be constructed out of two experienced players like Veltman and Viergever to guide and calm down De Ligt.

If he does that, and if he starts Kluivert on the left and Neres on the right, and this season might not be as doomed after all. At least, in the Eredivisie, of course.

Written by Lukas Schroder

Lukas writes every Wednesday for AjaxDaily. His love for Ajax is only transcended by his hate for Nemanja Gudelj. Got called 'The worst writer of all time' on Twitter once. Wears that like a badge.