Schreuder defends Bassey after horrific debut

Ajax boss Alfred Schreuder has defended his £19m defender Calvin Bassey after his nightmare debut but admitted he deserved his red card.

The Nigeria international defender was sent off just 14 minutes after coming on as a sub in big-spending Ajax’s shock 5-3 defeat to PSV Eindhoven in the traditional Dutch season curtain-raiser – the Johan Cruyff Shield.

Bassey only got permission to play late on Saturday after work permit problems had previously held up his debut.

But Schreuder has backed Bassey to recover from his troubled start in the Netherlands.

“In the end, I think the red card was decisive,” Schreuder said after the game.

You felt we could go on and win it, but it is always more difficult with one less man I looked at the incident after the game and he certainly didn’t do it deliberately, but he’s gone in a little too wild. I admit a red card could have been given and I can understand why they gave it.”

Ajax had led the game 1-0 thanks to Steven Bergwijn’s opener before PSV turned the game on its head before half-time thanks to a Guus Till double.

The hosts equalised through Antony and it was 2-2 when Bassey was introduced.

However, Cody Gakpo then fired Ruud Van Nistelrooy’s men back in front before Till bagged his hat-trick. Mohammad Kudus pulled one back before Bassey saw red.

In stoppage time, one-time Rangers transfer target Xavi Simons added a fifth to end any Ajax hopes of a dramatic comeback.

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