Ajax manager Frank de Boer has laid into Manchester City’s players, claiming they lack tactical discipline and do not work hard enough.
Roberto Mancini’s men were beaten 3-1 by the Dutch champions on Wednesday night in Amsterdam, leaving them with a mountain to climb if they are to get out of the Champions League group stages for the first time.
Manchester City were criticised for the manner in which they defended but Mancini took the blame afterwards, saying his tactical change was unfamiliar to his players and the confusion caused allowed Christian Eriksen to add the third goal.
De Boer was not impressed with the suggestion that Mancini had caused his side’s downfall by tweaking the system, claiming that the Citizens boss had some of the best players in the world available to him and that they should be tactically flexible.
“If you are at the top level and your manager tell you to do two things, you have to be able to do it,” he is quoted as saying by ESPN.
The former Holland international was not finished there, however, and further laid into certain Manchester City players for a lack of effort.
Ajax’s right-back Ricardo van Rhijn was a thorn in City’s side over the night and he fully capitalised by setting up the equaliser, which prompted De Boer to point out the players that were supposed to be tracking him.
“There are always moments in games when Mario Balotelli, Sergio Aguero and Samir Nasri go to sleep,” he added.
“They do not chase the full-back, as they do not believe it is necessary.