Ajax poaches AZ’s Alex Kroes as new general manager

The Johan Cruyff Arena, Ajax's home stadium

Ajax is aiming to appoint AZ’s director of international football strategy as general manager to replace Edwin van der Sar but the date Alex Kroes will start depends on the one-year non-compete clause he has with the Alkmaar club.

Kroes will be appointed for a three year term once the negotiations over the clause have been sorted out but Ajax admits this could take up to a year to complete. During the interim period, the current directors will currently handle the CEO’s responsibilities.

Kroes, who is almost 49, is co-founder of talent agency Sports Entertainment Group, and has worked for AZ since last December. He went through Ajax’s youth academy but never played professionally although he still plays for Ajax as a veteran.

Ajax had a miserable last season, coming third in the league and failing to get past the group stage of the Champions League.

The club also undergone considerable upheaval in recent months. Captain Dusan Tadic left in July because he was unhappy about the club’s selection and transfer strategy ahead of the new season.

Van de Sar stepped down from the job in June after coming in for considerable criticism and Sparta coach Maurice Steijn has been drafted in as the permanent successor to Alfred Schreuder, who was sacked in January.

In April, Ajax brought in German national Sven Mislintat as technical director, a year after Marc Overmars left for sexually harassing women who worked at the club.

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