Francesco Farioli reaches Ajax agreement


Reports from Holland suggest Ajax have reached an agreement in principle with Nice boss Francesco Farioli. Dutch newspaper De Telegraaf report that the Italian coach will sign a three-season contract. This information comes from sources close to Farioli and his agent, Meïssa N’Diaye.

Initial contact between Ajax and Farioli was not made by Technical Director Alex Kroes but, during his suspension as CEO, by Head Scout Kelvin de Lang and Football Director Marijn Beuker. For the trio, Erik ten Hag was the top choice with Graham Potter as the second option. After failing to secure the services of the Manchester United coach and the recently dismissed Englishman from Chelsea, attention turned to Farioli.

Ajax did not rush into the decision, acknowledging the risks associated with selecting the Nice coach who does not fit the profile of an “experienced, preferably Dutch coach, with Ajax DNA”.

However, after observing footage from dozens of Farioli’s training sessions, analyzing his team’s build-up play and pressing, and engaging in discussions with the coach, Ajax’s leadership became increasingly convinced of the coach born in Florence. Farioli cites Pep Guardiola’s Barcelona, Arrigo Sacchi’s AC Milan, and Johan Cruyff’s Ajax as his inspirations. He studied philosophy and sports science at the University of Florence and was asked by Roberto de Zerbi to serve as a goalkeeper coach.

Described within Ajax as equally driven as Arne Slot and Erik ten Hag, Farioli is considered a “football fanatic” who introduces long working hours to refine his tactics and patterns. He also adheres to the Italian tradition of defensive solidity, which seems necessary given Ajax’s concession of 59 goals in 33 Eredivisie matches. However, Farioli emphasizes that he dedicates 75% of his training time to attacking play.

One advantage for Farioli, according to sources close to him and his agent, is his ability to enter Ajax without preconceptions and away from the negativity often surrounding the club in the media. Additionally, he presents a relatively affordable option, although Ajax will need to pay a buyout fee to OGC Nice.


Serie A obsessive.