Arsenal, Man City Target Jan Vertonghen Pledges Future To Ajax
Ajax defender Jan Vertonghen has reiterated his desire to remain at his parent club in spite of being linked with moves to English heavyweights Arsenal and Manchester City. The Belgian centre-back is willing to ply his trade at Ajax and play Champions League football next season if no move to another club pans out.
Arsenal were reportedly interested in the 24 year old, whose compatriot Thomas Vermaelen also plays for the Gunners and who also came from Ajax. Man City were credited with an interest as well. But none of the clubs followed up on their initial queries, and it seems as if Vertonghen will stay in Netherlands next season.
Speaking to the official website at Ajax, he said that he was looking forward to next season and the opportunity to pit his wits against the very best in Europe via the Champions League. He said-
“The way things stand at the moment I will stay with Ajax for another year. I’m fully focused on Ajax. I really wanted to play Champions League football again and it’s a huge plus that it’s possible here,”
He also gave a glowing review to the current Ajax squad, claiming that they were a very balanced and string team with at least two strong players in each position, and a refreshing mix of experience and youngsters. He stated his wish to won the Eredivisie title again next season and to push on in Europe as much as possible.
“At present there’s no reason to leave. I want to win the Eredivisie title again here. I think we have a very strong selection, very balanced. We have at least two good players for every position. Additionally, we’ve signed some promising youngsters.”
Vertonghen had a stop and start beginning to his Ajax with injuries and fierce competition for places hampering his progress. But after Heitinga left in 2008-09, he has moved from strength to strength and been an ever present starter for the Dutch club. The fleet-footed defender with an eye for goals is one of the most important players Ajax currently has, and they will understandably do all they can to keep him away from prying eyes.
Vertonghen has a contract till 2013, and the club won’t accept anything below 15 million Euros for the player for sure. It remains to be seen whether Arsenal, Manchester City or any other club are willing to match that valuation, of if Vertonghen continues plying his trade at Ajax next season. Stay tuned for more in this regard.