• Analysis

Match Preview: Ajax vs PSV – Dutch Super Cup

Ajax v Juventus - UEFA Champions League Quarter Final: First Leg
Getty Images
Advertisement

Ajax and PSV will meet each other in the Dutch Super Cup at the Johan Cruyff Arena on Saturday at 18:00 (CET).

Eredivisie champions Ajax will open the 2019-20 campaign in Dutch football, facing PSV Eindhoven in the 2019 Johan Cruyff Shield – the annual Super Cup match.

The Jews played amazing football last season, they won a domestic double and reached the Champions League semi-finals for the first time in 22 years.

PSV, on the other hand, won the same amount of points as in the 2017-18 season when they won the Eredivisie, but failed to retain the crown, finishing three points behind their rivals.

However, with Ajax winning both the league and the cup, the Farmers will play in the Johan Cruyff Shield as runners-up from the previous season.

Team news

Ajax will start the new season without their star players from the previous campaign, Frenkie de Jong and Matthijs de Ligt, who left for Barcelona and Juventus respectively.

Andre Onana, Noussair Mazraoui and Hakim Ziyech will not be available as well, following their duties in the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations.

Sam Lammers may start the game for PSV Eindhoven, after scoring in the dramatic 3-2 win against Basel in the Champions League qualifiers last Tuesday.

New signings Bruma and Olivier Boscagli are both in line to make their domestic debuts, while Ibrahim Afellay could make his second debut in the red and white striped shirt after rejoining the club as a free agent this summer.

What did the managers say

Erik ten Hag wants to keep up the good work and start the new season where they finished the last one, winning another trophy.

“If the players do not see the Johan Cruijff Scale as a real prize, then they do not belong to Ajax”, he said via Goal.

“The group is in good shape. The players are looking forward to it and are motivated. They are growing towards each other. We are working well, but we are not yet where we want to be. We still need to improve.

“If we want to improve every day and create a winning culture, we cannot consider the Super Cup as a training game.”

Mark van Bommel opened the new season at PSV with a 3-2 victory in the first leg of their UCL qualifying encounter with Basel. They face a busy schedule, with the Super Cup game against Ajax coming a few days before their trip to Switzerland for the second leg.

“Moving the match to a later date has been no option. We will just play these big games. We will have to cope with it and that’s it,” he said via the PSV official website.

“Each player has his own story. We work with players that have just joined us and with players who have returned to PSV after a loan spell and with players who have just started pre-season training after an extended holiday.

“We will have to rotate players as we play a match every three or four days in the next few weeks.”

Stats

PSV are the most successful team in the Johan Cruyff Shield having won 11 trophies so far, compared to Ajax’s eight.

The Farmers played in the last year’s Super Cup as champions, but suffered a defeat on penalties against the cup-winners from 2018, Feyenoord.

Ajax will be looking to lift the trophy for the first time since 2013, when they defeated AZ Alkmaar after the extra time.

They’ve won their last two home games against arch-rivals PSV Eindhoven with a goal difference of 6-1.

Do not get excited about watching penalties, as we’ve witnessed only one draw in their last 16 encounters, but expect to see goals, with their last goalless draw dating back to February 2011.

Both sides have faced each other seven times in the Johan Cruyff Shield, as Ajax leads with four wins, compared to PSV’s three in their head-to-head meetings so far.