After the wins against PSV and Sparta and the return to the upper regions of the Eredivisie there’s a new élan in Rotterdam. ‘It’s all in our own hands again. A feeling of invincibility is creeping into the team,’ as Kees van Wonderen puts it. The experienced defence does add a note of caution however. ‘With two hard games against Inter Milan, we’ll have a tough job making sure we don’t drop too many points in the league.’

‘With the 0-5 against Sparta we have given a fitting end to a fantastic week. We are in the semifinal of the UEFA Cup and after Ajax’s draw against PSV we have dropped the same number of points as the front runner, so everything is in our own hands in the race for the title too. ‘But it will be tough making sure we don’t drop too many points in the league now we have two difficult games against Inter Milan. The reaction to the PSV game was clearly visible against Sparta. While we don’t normally give too many chances away; we were sloppy now and again and Sparta could even have scored. You notice that the game after a difficult European match is always a slog. Between the games with Inter Milan we have a home game with NAC and an away fixture at PSV. Not exactly pushovers. ‘The quarterfinal match with PSV was another fabulous experience: to come off best in a seething Kuip after penalties was fantastic. The best thing was that it was well deserved over two games and that we are maturing nicely as a team. Bit by bit a feeling of invincibility is creeping into the team. We are finally shot of the majority of injuries and we have been able to play more or less the same team for weeks. That pays off. Hopefully we’ll retain that zip right to the end and manage to get a nice trophy this season.’
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