The Eredivisie is often a forgotten league despite the talent which it has produced, a lot of which has been through the clubs’ own academy set-ups. Some of the greatest players of all-time came through the Eredivisie school of football, and it has had its fair share of forgotten stars, too – even from the big clubs in Ajax and Feyenoord.
Both clubs have had their own list of greats come at the club such as Edgar Davids, Johan Cruyff, Ronald Koeman, Edwin van der Saar and Frank Rijkaard. However, both have also had a huge list of players you have most likely forgotten even knew how to spell Feyenoord or Ajax. So, here’s an 18 player dent in the massive list of those forgotten gems between the two.
Disclaimer, some are definitely not gems…
Reiziger came through the Ajax academy before making his debut at 17. He won two Eredivisie titles, one Champions League, one UEFA Cup, one UEFA Super Cup, one Intercontinental Cup and domestic cups too with Ajax. Image source: Alchetron
Having only played in two clubs' senior sides, it may seem strange to forget where the current Spurs player came from. Having been signed by Ajax into their youth team, he went on to win five trophies in five years in the Eredivisie. Image source: TheColumnUK
The Romanian left-back moved to Ajax at 19. He became captain and was a pivotal figure in Ajax's domestic domination in the early 2000's. He won one Eredivisie, one Dutch cup and one Dutch Supercup. Better known for his time at Inter, and, that protective headgear. Now, retired. Image source: Voetbal International.
Liverpool may as well have bought a pair of chocolate clogs from Ajax. Said time at Liverpool has made even neutral fans try their best to erase his existence from their memory. Won two Eredivisies and the Arabian Gulf Super Cup, nice... Image source: Paneka
Won two Eredivisies in his two years at Ajax. The 'King of Cairo' formed a formidable friendship with Zlatan. The pair went on from there to enjoy a long fruitful career thanks to their fitness at the top level of football. Oh, wait, that's Zlatan. Mido went on to join 12 more clubs and fail at them all. Image source: Twitter.
If anything is to be determined by the Pole's time in the Eredivisie it is simply, why on earth wasn't everyone clambering over him?! 75 returned a whopping 47 goals. Perhaps better known as 'that other class Polish international striker' – Napoli took a punt, he has since torn his cruciate ligament. Ah... Image source: NSNO
Perhaps better known for his days at Milan, Barca and Newcastle this Dutchman has been class since day one. He was instrumental in the 94/95 Eredivisie title for Ajax who didn't lose a game all season. In 97 appearances he notched 50 goals. Image source: AlmanKale
The Serbian joined Ajax in 2008 and is still the Dutch club's record signing. He was with the club for five years, and he almost moved to West Ham United but for a denied work permit. 158 games later and 38 goals (not bad for an attacking winger!) as well as the three Eredivisie winner medals Sulejmani moved to Benfica in 2013. Image source: NUsport
The man, the myth, the legend that is Kanu once plyed his trade for Ajax. Prior to 'playing' for Inter, the Nigerian spent three years in the Eredivisie. 54 appearances and 27 goals was a mean return. So was the three Eredivisie titles, Champions League win, UEFA Super Cup win and Intercontinental Cup win! Nothing in comparison to his time at Portsmouth mind. Image source: Goal
Dudek actually spent five years in the Eredivisie with Feyenoord – making more appearances than he did for Liverpool, also winning more league titles there too. Shocker... Image source: Przegladsportowy
Slid casually out of his contract with Feyenoord, via court ruling, to get every footballers' dream move to Scotland. He didn't have the same goals return at Feyenoord though he did notch 26 goals in 101 games. He also won the Eredivisie's domestic KNVB Cup twice. Image source: VotebalInternational
What a lazy sod. Raw pace, strength and great going forward. But he just couldn't be bothered. He didn't score for the club, didn't win anything and after only two years as a senior member of the squad got signed by Real Madrid. We don't have time to touch on just how badly downhill it went from his move away from his boyhood club. What a shame... Image source; Fr12
Money, perfectly slicked hair, Chinese money, hair. Ahem. Pelle joined Feyenoord in 2012 on loan from Parma, before making it permanent the season after. 65 games and 55 goals in two seasons saw him leave the Eredivisie having had more success at his former club AZ Alkmaar. Image source: NRC
Giovanni van Bronckhorst
YES! What a player. Remembered for his time at Arsenal, Rangers and Barcelona. Starting his career with Feyenoord, he returned to the club almost 10 years later. Overall racking up 235 appearances and 36 goals. For a left-back-cum-midfielder? Magical. Oh, he also now manages Feyenoord. Niiiiice! Image souce: NUsport
The Ivory Coast striker once plyed his trade in the Eredivisie, forming a top partnership with Dirk Kuyt for Feyenoord. Making 82 appearances and scoring 42 goals in his three seasons, before Chelsea came calling. The only thing he won in Holland was the Dutch Football Talent Of The Year in 2005. Still, bet it's a cracking trophy... Image source: Voetbal
Right, this one is unbelievable. The Irishman started at Watford, found himself at Feyenoord in 1997 where he only played 25 games, scoring seven goals. Then, well, he did something of a grand tour. Wimbledon, West Ham Wigan, Wimbledon, AFC Wimbledon. All the Ws and more! Image source: Voetbal
Came through at Feyenoord and made his debut at 17. Managed to rack up 37 appearances scoring 17 goals before Inter came calling. You may have forgotten he also played there, as well! One season later and six games to his name, it was back to the Eredivisie with Twente. What a waste! Image source: VotebalInternational
From Bury to Corinthians...Yeah, it's one of those stories. One of his many clubs was Feyenoord, after a surprisingly good loan spell turned permanent...before going sour. Should have seen it coming. Image source: SPORTAL
SEE ALSO: Nwankwo Kanu’s Unfortunate Spell At Arsenal
With the complete list of forgotten Ajax and Feyenoord players falling far short, to Kazim-Richards’ own list of clubs played for, it’s remarkable that these 18 players don’t even scratch the surface. Unfortunately for both clubs, it’s down to their much belittled league. With the Eredivisie serving as a revolving door, in and out of Dutch football, who can really be blamed for not forgetting the vast majority of Ajax and Feyenoord players?!