'Ashamed': Football great quits in disgrace over texts to female staff

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
·3-min read
In this article:
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
Marc Overmars (L) has stood down as Ajax sporting director as a result of 'inappropriate' messages he sent female colleagues. Pic: Getty
Marc Overmars (L) has stood down as Ajax sporting director as a result of 'inappropriate' messages he sent female colleagues. Pic: Getty

Dutch football legend Marc Overmars has left his role at Ajax in disgrace, following a series of “inappropriate messages” to female colleagues.

Ajax confirmed on social media that Overmars had stood down from his role as director of football, after admitting that his behaviour was "unacceptable".

'PATHETIC': Football world fumes over Manchester United 'disgrace'

'IT'S FOR SUFFERING': US football savaged over shocking scenes

INTERESTING: Why missing WC might be the best thing for Socceroos

Overmars' exit followed reports of alleged misconduct and came after discussions with the Dutch club's CEO Edwin van der Sar and the supervisory board.

A statement on Ajax’s official website said: “Director of football affairs Marc Overmars will leave Ajax with immediate effect.

“He made this decision after discussions in recent days with the supervisory board and CEO Edwin van der Sar and communicated his intentions to them.

“A series of inappropriate messages sent to several female colleagues over an extended period of time underlies his decision to leave the club.”

Former Ajax, Arsenal and Barcelona midfielder Overmars, who had been in his post since the summer of 2012, says he deeply regretted his actions.

“I am ashamed. Last week I was confronted with reports about my behaviour and how this has come across to others," Overmars said.

“Unfortunately, I didn’t realise that I was crossing the line with this, but that was made clear to me in recent days. I suddenly felt enormous pressure.

“I apologise. Certainly for someone in my position, this behaviour is unacceptable. I now see that too.

“But it is too late. I see no other option but to leave Ajax. This also has a major impact on my private situation. That is why I ask everyone to leave me and my family alone.”

Seen here, Ajax sporting director Marc Overmars prior to the Dutch Eredivisie match against Heracles Almelo in October, 2021.
Ajax sporting director Marc Overmars looks on prior to the Dutch Eredivisie match against Heracles Almelo in October, 2021. Pic: Getty

Marc Overmars situation 'devastating' for Ajax

Supervisory board chairman Leen Meijaard said Overmars’ behaviour had been “devastating” for the women involved, leaving Ajax with little option but to sever ties with “probably the best football director" the club has had.

Former Netherlands teammate Van der Sar added: “I find the situation appalling for everyone and I agree with Leen Meijaard’s words.

“In my role, I also feel responsible to help colleagues. A safe sport and working climate is very important. We will pay even more attention to this in the near future.

“Marc and I have been playing together since the early 1990s, first at Ajax and then with the national team, and we have been colleagues in the management of Ajax for almost 10 years now.

“That has now come to a very abrupt end. We are working on something very wonderful here at Ajax, so this news will also be a blow to everyone who cares about Ajax.”

with agencies

Click here to sign up to our newsletter for all the latest and breaking stories from Australia and around the world.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting