SPORTS

Netherlands’ Ajax presents newly acquired Greece striker to the press

Greece striker Angelos Charisteas, who signed a three-and-a-half year deal with Ajax Amsterdam before Christmas, was officially presented to the press by the Dutch club yesterday. No financial details have been given. Charisteas, who did not enjoy regular play with his former German club, the Bundesliga defending champions Werder Bremen, was, according to German press, sold for 5 million euros. He had transferred to Werder from Thessaloniki club Aris in 2002. «I want to show my true worth on the pitch. I proved my ability at the European Championships. I’m a professional and have lots more to learn,» Charisteas, who won the double with Werder last season and was a key scorer in Greece’s Euro 2004 triumph, told reporters. Ajax failed to reach this season’s Champions League knockout phase reserved for 16 teams. Two seasons ago, the Dutch club reached the prestigious competition’s quarterfinals with one of their youngest teams ever. But the club failed to find appropriate replacements for key players, including Swedish striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic, now with Juventus. Club officials said they were counting on Charisteas.