Ajax Amsterdam’s director of football Mark Overmars has disclosed that Nigeria legends Kanu Nwankwo and Finidi are two of the best players the club has ever recruited.
Overmars played alongside the Nigerians praised the club’s scout in Africa for the spotting both players, but admitted it will be difficult to discover players of their calibers now.
“I thought it was very clever that Ajax got two Nigerians, who almost literally came from the jungle. Kanu had never played football in a stadium, did not even know the rules well,” said Overmars, as quoted on the Ajax official website.
“It is so great that you get those two and that they have become so important to Ajax.”
“The time is different, of course. Tonnie Pronk was the only scout in Nigeria at the time. In the matches where he watched Finidi and Kanu, there was no one else.” he said.
Kanu and Finidi joined the Dutch giants in 1993 from Nigeria professional Heartland and Rivers United formerly known as Iwuanyanwu Nationale and Sharks of Port Harcourt, respectively in 1993.
Both players settled quickly into life at the club and were part of the Ajax team that dominated Europe in the mid-90s.
Both players later left the club for Real Betis and Inter Milan respectively, but Kanu and Overmars reunited at Arsenal and won the premier league title before the Dutch winger was transferred to Barcelona.
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