Efstathiou: Young talent Ajax's priority
Posted: 25 August 2017 Time: 11:07
Ajax Cape Town CEO Ari Efstathiou believes Rivaldo Coetzee’s transfer to Scottish giants Glasgow Celtic highlights the focus put into the Ikamva development academy.
The Bafana Bafana international, who arrived at Ajax as a 15-year-old, will be playing his football in the Scottish Premier League this season after completing his move from Cape Town to Glasgow, pending a medical and work permit.
Coetzee follows in the footsteps of Steven Pienaar, Daylon Claasen, Thulani Serero and Eyong Enoh, who all left Ajax for European pastures, bringing plenty of pride to Efstathiou.
“Ajax Cape Town has undoubtedly proved once again that we always prioritise the future of our young talent after graduating from our academy, we try and find the best way to enrich the player’s future by placing them where we believe they will prosper most,” Efstathiou said on Ajax’s official website.
|We are happy that more players will be following Rivaldo to Europe in the very, very near future. We are glad that Ajax Cape Town’s vision and commitment to youth has once again proved its worth.”
He continued: |I think it is important to note that when we scout our youth, we do so with a plan in mind. There are certain players that have the ability to play only in South Africa, and there are some, that as they progress, we believe can play in Europe.
|For example, Rivaldo is someone we believed shouldn’t be going to a South African club and although we had received written offers for him, we still felt that the ideal place for him would be in Europe. But, we had to find the right club for him.
|We had limitations with regards to his height in terms of playing in Europe, but we managed to find a club that takes advantage of his style – playing from the back – and that is what Celtic will do.
|Once it came to our attention that there was a possibility to get him to Scotland we put all our efforts to get him to Celtic. It would have been much easier for us to take up the first offer, but we had to consider what would have been the best option for the player.|