Scouted: Ajax’s next big thing
CLUB Ajax POSITION Forward
His quick feet, ability on the ball and goalscoring record help to make him the complete striker. He is also strong outside the box, from where he has scored some impressive goals already. His capacity to shoot accurately, beat opponents and combine well with his team-mates have made him look like a true Ajax player. Arriving from Danish club Silkeborg in 2015, he started in the youth ranks before joining the likes of Johan Cruyff, Marco van Basten and Patrick Kluivert by finding the net on his first-team debut, against PAOK in July. A left-winger at first, Dolberg has converted to become a lone frontman.
A laid-back and very calm character, he possesses an excellent attitude for the game. Emotions do not tend to take over with this striker, so opponents are unable to throw him off his stride. Dolberg often celebrates scoring a goal in a modest way – partly in keeping with his character, and partly because he has recently said that it might take him away from his focus on the game. Given his qualities and his ability to remain unflustered, he is already being compared with Ajax and Netherlands legend Dennis Bergkamp, who has been working as their assistant manager since 2011 and can help Dolberg develop further.
At more than 6ft tall he’s a good height for a striker, although he is yet to really develop physically. Despite that, he is strong with his body and uses it smartly, and he’s also good in the air. His jumping power is aided by the time that he spent playing handball as a youngster – both of his parents were top handball players in Denmark, but he chose to prioritise football at the age of 12. He spent a few spells watching on from the sidelines during 2015-16 due to several injury problems and it was anticipated that he would need to be rested at times in this campaign, but so far he has been a regular fixture in the Ajax side.