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Van der Sar ends Man United speculation as he extends contract at Ajax

Ajax’s general manager has signed a new deal.

Ajax chief Edwin van der Sar.
Ajax chief Edwin van der Sar.

EDWIN VAN DER Sar has signed a new four-year contract as Ajax’s general manager, seemingly ending any chance of him moving to Manchester United.

Van der Sar returned to the Dutch club he served as a player, joining as a marketing director in 2012 before being elevated to his current key leadership role four years later.

Since Van der Sar took up that position, Ajax have taken a significant step towards being the European force they were when the former goalkeeper played for the club in the 1990s.

“Very happy with my contract extension at this beautiful club,” he wrote on his official Twitter account.

“We’ve had some difficult moments, but the good times are definitely back. And of course we want more in the future!”

Although last season’s Eredivisie title was their first since 2014, Ajax reached the Europa League final in 2016-17 and then captured the imaginations of neutrals en route to the Champions League semi-finals last term.

Long renowned for their impressive academy, Ajax have been particularly effective at bringing through talented players in the past few seasons, while their recruitment has also been praised in recent times.

Matthijs de Ligt and Frenkie de Jong are among those to have come through and been sold on at a massive profit, while David Neres, Hakim Ziyech, Nicolas Tagliafico, Lisandro Martinez and others highlight Ajax’s excellent talent identification.

Van der Sar’s overseeing of such areas saw him become one of the favourites to land a similar role at another of his former clubs, Manchester United, when executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward was reportedly looking into hiring a director of football in 2018.

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However, United have provided precious few updates on their search for that position, with Van der Sar now apparently out of reach if the Old Trafford club do ultimately decide to fill the void.

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