Ajax – and more than 100,000 of their fans – threw the party of all parties to celebrate their 34th league title.
Huge crowds packed into Amsterdam’s Museumplein on Thursday to celebrate the Eredivisie win and Dutch Cup success.
Indeed so many people turned out that DutchNews reported the city’s Van Gogh and Stedelijk museums were closed, and three secondary schools were forced to move final exams to a different location because of the noise.
Ajax’s players, who beat De Graafschap 4-1 on Wednesday to wrap up the title, took it in turns to lift their latest silverware on a stage in front of the cheering fans.
Captain Matthijs de Ligt was the star of the show – proving himself to be a top defender off the pitch as well as on it.
The 19-year-old came to the rescue of Mayor of Amsterdam Femke Halsema when someone in the crowd threw a beer towards her as she was about to give a speech.
Just as the can was about to land, De Ligt caught it and threw it back.
There were also poignant moments, with Ajax dedicating their 34th league title to Abdelhak Nouri, who collapsed during a pre-season friendly against Werder Bremen in July 2017.
The midfielder was airlifted from the pitch, and it was later revealed he had suffered “serious and permanent” brain damage.
According to his team-mates, Nouri wore the number 34 because he wanted to help the club win their 34th league title.
De Ligt also gave a moving speech referencing the late Johan Cruyff, a three-time Ballon d’Or winner and Ajax and Netherlands legend.
“We’ve shown everyone what Ajax is about, what kind of city Amsterdam is,” he said.
“We have shown everyone what we stand for, and that is attacking football. We’ve shown everyone what the big man above us wanted to see and what he expected from us. We did it all together. Experienced players, youth players, everyone. And the supporters, we want to thank you for a fantastic season.”
Had it not been for Lucas Moura’s late winner for Tottenham in the Champions League semi-final last week, Ajax could have been on for a treble. Imagine the celebrations then.