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Standard start as underdogs in European clash with Ajax, but: “We obviously have something prepared”

07872bc33e3de153fec6c6ccd8265a3d - Standard start as underdogs in European clash with Ajax, but: “We obviously have something prepared”

Not only in Belgium’s Michel Preud’homme is a great gentleman, also in the Netherlands, the respect for the Standard-trainer large. That fell in all of the gepingpong between him and the Dutch media. The Also took therein likes the role of underdog. “That amounts that Ajax pays, can we at Standard never changed hands”, she said. And yet, he believes secretly in a stunt.


07/08 20:00


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Other than for the Europa League-match of two years ago, sitting in the sweltering press room of the Standard now filled with Dutch journalists and Ajax-watchers. The reason we don’t have time to search: Michel Preud’homme. The Standard trainer is also by our neighbors is a big name. Of course, by that heroic match that he keepte at the world cup 1994 against Orange, and not to forget its passage at FC Twente in 2010-2011. When the Tukkers with Preud’homme as trainer for both the supercup as the cup final won against Ajax.


When you get to the Dutch colleagues to be consulted, they speak with respect about Preud’homme. “He has something dropped on it,” says Daniel Dwarswaard of the Newspaper. “Outside the domestic successes he made the quarter finals of the Europa League and the style of play was fine. He made so sure to impress.”

Sure, there was also that other side, his behavior along the sidelines. So named Johan Derksen of the high-profile voetbaltalkshow Football Inside him ever, “a dorpsidioot and during matches of unsound mind”.

“But,” says Johan Boskamp, who also regularly makes its appearance in the tv program, “Michel has done a great job. All of which won awards and actually he also had that title. Nevertheless, he had in the end gone.”

Tonight is Preud’homme, moreover, an old acquaintance. Ajax-T2 Alfred Schreuder at the time was his right hand at Twente. “We have always kept in contact,” says the person from liege. “I learned from him the Dutch take on football, he of me the foreign.” It is about what Schreuder himself explains in The Telegraph. “Michel managed to convince us that we are on a different way to play. He found that there not so long had to be tapped, that it is more directly needed. Even though it led in the beginning to resistance.”

Preud’homme amused himself yesterday, however, with the many questions of the Dutch colleagues. Who is the favourite? “The Dutch have made to tell the truth. The feeling in the press is, I think, that Standard is no large task for Ajax,” he smiles. The underdogrol, so. “When you see what players they have bought… those are the amounts that we Standard not able to pay. They buy for 50 million players, while a foreign club for a few pennies, our keeper would like to hire”, he refers to the rejected bid from Napoli on Ochoa.

Home first is no disadvantage

“The pressure on them is great for after those investments, the Champions League. As I said earlier, the Champions League bonus. Which is not to say that we are not for the full 100 percent go for it. In football you always have a chance. We have of course our plan and they go out of their comfort zone to try to pick up. There is a physical fight? There we have the players for. We want to Ajax talk battle.”

Finally got the Liege T1 and TD is still the question of whether or not a disadvantage is that his team first, plays at home and the return. “Well, I won with KV Mechelen european cup II. That season we played first at home. Oh, the final was against Ajax. Do you know that?”, schatert he to a Dutch journalist.

The second leg in Amsterdam next week Tuesday. With a win, place Standard for the play-offronde of the Champions League. The opponent in the process, the winner of the match between Slavia Prague and Dinamo Kiev. The heenwedstrijd of that last round in Liège place on 21/22 August, the return will follow a week later, on 28/29 August.

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