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Ajax denied Dutch title as Eredivisie season is declared void

It is the first major European league to end the campaign prematurely, meaning there will be no relegation or promotion.

Jonas Svensson of AZ Alkmaar and Ajax star Hakim Ziyech.
Jonas Svensson of AZ Alkmaar and Ajax star Hakim Ziyech.
Image: Federico Guerra Maranesi

THE 2019/20 EREDIVISIE season has been declared void due to the Covid-19 pandemic. 

With 25 matches played and nine rounds remaining, defending champions Ajax and AZ Alkmaar were sat level on 56 points, although last season’s Champions League semi-finalists led by superior goal difference. 

However, following a video conference call between the Dutch football association (KNVB) and the clubs, the campaign has been ended with immediate effect. 

That means no champion will be declared, while there will be no relegation or promotion. 

RKC Waalwijk were bottom of the table, with ADO Den Haag and Fortuna Sittard occupying the relegation play-off spots. 

The decision, which is the first by a major European league, comes after the Dutch government extended its ban on events until 1 September at least. 

AZ Alkmaar, who will go into next season’s Champions League alongside Ajax, have been quick to release a statement criticising the move. 

“We have been working for weeks in the background to elaborate multiple scenarios, in order to prevent the situation we are now in,” responded AZ’s general director Robert Eenhoorn. “However, our proposals have remained unanswered.

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“We have always followed the agreed path, whereby solidarity and compensation have weighed heavily throughout the entire process. We are disappointed that we are now forced to make it clear in this crisis that we do not agree with the way in which the Board has brought about the allocation of European places.”

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Ben Blake

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