Ajax director of football Marc Overmars has confirmed that the Dutch club stopped defender Joel Veltman from leaving this summer as they couldn’t afford to lose him.
The fullback was heavily linked with a move to West Ham and the player had expressed his desire to play abroad, but Overmars says it would have been a risk to let him go despite interest in him from one club in particular:
“It was too dangerous to let him go. I understand it was a shame for him because there was a club that was serious about going on [to sign him]. But the risk was too great that if something happened [with injuries], he would also be gone”
Midfielder Lasse Schone was sold to Genoa in the summer and it is believed that Ajax were hesitant to let too many experienced players leave all at once.
It meant that despite Veltman having stated that he wanted a move away from the Johan Cruyff Arena, he was forced into staying in order to keep some cohesion in the squad.
In addition to Schone, they sold the likes of Matthijs de Ligt to Juventus and Frenkie de Jong to Barcelona this summer with the team having seen a large turnover of players.