What seemed to be a great weekend for Ajax turned to a low point just before midnight. At 11:30 p.m., the club officially announced that they were saying goodbye to football director Marc Overmars. “Cross-border messages to several colleagues are the basis of the decision.”
From a sporting point of view, it was a perfect weekend for Ajax. They easily won 3-0 against Heracles on Sunday and big contenders PSV lost on Saturday. This gives Ajax a 5-point lead in the table.
However, all optimism was blown away by the news from Ajax that the club is parting ways with Marc Overmars.
Officially, a statement from the club states that Overmars himself has decided to resign.
“He made this decision after discussions with the board and CEO Edwin van der Sar over the past few days,” writes Ajax. “Behind this decision is a series of inappropriate messages to female colleagues over an extended period of time.”
I am ashamed. Last week I was confronted with reports about my behavior.
Overmars himself also speaks on the club’s website. “I am ashamed. Last week I was confronted with reports about my behavior and how it is perceived by others.”
“Unfortunately, I didn’t realize that I was crossing borders with it, but that has become clear to me these days. I suddenly felt enormous pressure.”
“I apologize,” Overmars said. “Certainly this behavior is not acceptable for someone in my position, I see that now too. But too late.”
“I don’t see any other option than quitting at Ajax. This also has a major impact on my private situation. So I ask everyone to leave me and my family alone.”
Architect of sporting success
The news of Marc Overmars will no doubt hit the fans and the club particularly hard.
This is not only a heavy stain on the club crest, but also a sporting loss. Along with Edwin van der Sar, Overmars was considered the architect of the current success of Ajax in the Netherlands and Europe.
Several European clubs have recently shown interest in his sporting insights, but in December he extended his contract with Ajax until 2026 (see ‘Read also’).