Nemanja Gudelj moves from AZ to Ajax
Amsterdam, May 7 (IANS)
AZ footballer Nemanja Gudelj has signed a five-year contract until mid-2020 at Ajax. The 23-year-old had a contract until the summer of 2017 at AZ but interested clubs could have taken him over for a limited transfer fee of around six million euros. The deal with Ajax, currently second in Eredivisie behind champions PSV, starts on July 1, reports Xinhua.
Before his arrival at AZ in 2013, the midfielder played for NAC Breda. In total, he has now played 139 matches in Eredivisie, scoring 24 goals. This season he is on a personal record of 11 goals in 31 matches with two regular match rounds remaining in the Dutch league.
"This is the right moment to join Ajax. It's the right step in my development," the Serbian international said.
Nemanja has different qualities and a winning mentality: De Boer
Ajax coach Frank de Boer said: "We looked at what kind of players we were missing in our current selection. We came to the conclusion that we occasionally miss a certain energy in the team.
"In some matches, you need players who not only can make a difference technically but also physically and in terms of appearance. With the arrival of Nemanja, we now have someone who has all these different qualities and also a winning mentality. He is an example, both in and out of the field."
Gudelj was born in Belgrade on November 16, 1991. He is the son of former Bosnian Serb player Nebojsa Gudelj, who coached Dutch club NAC Breda from 2012 until 2014.
Dragisa Gudelj, the 17-year-old brother of Nemanja, also joined Ajax, for three years. He comes over from the youth academy of NAC Breda.