During the scandal that rocked Ajax last year, it appears that former Arsenal legend Marc Overmars was given a perverse nickname due to his inappropriate behaviour. The manner of the incidents resulted in Overmars leaving the club. But what were the people behind the scenes calling him? And why didn’t it set alarm bells ringing earlier? Let’s take a look.
Overmars made a name for himself as a winger at Ajax before moving to Arsenal. It’s here where he played a crucial role in the club’s success during the late 1990s. His blistering pace and clinical finishing made him a fan favourite, and he was a key part of the Arsenal squad that secured the Premier League and FA Cup double in the 1997-1998 season.
Marc Overmars’ Nickname Should Have ‘Rang Alarm Bells’
However, fast forward to today, his reputation is in tatters after what happened behind the scenes at Ajax. It’s was reported that the 50-year-old former midfielder sent explicit and unsolicited messages to female employees at the club. These messages included a series of disturbing and unwanted dick pics.
Shockingly, Overmars was apparently known as “Dirty Uncle Marc” and “Geilneef,” which translates to “horny cousin”. This nickname reflects the extent of the knowledge others at the club had on the behaviour of Overmars.
Van der Sar’s Complicity?
Edwin van der Sar, the former CEO of Ajax and a respected figure in football, has also come under scrutiny in this scandal. It’s been alleged that Van der Sar was aware of Overmars’ behaviour for weeks but took no action until the women involved threatened to go public. This raises serious questions about Van der Sar’s role in enabling and perpetuating the toxic culture within the club.
Female employees reported receiving explicit images and messages from Overmars, often bordering on harassment. Ajax’s culture was one where women felt unable to speak out against such behaviour, fearing a lack of support.
One employee described it as a “cock culture,” where women were subjected to inappropriate jokes and the sharing of private photos without their consent. The toxic atmosphere within the club has had a detrimental impact on its female staff, insiders say.
Overmars’ Departure and Royal Antwerp Appointment
In the wake of these revelations, Marc Overmars resigned from his position as director of football affairs at Ajax. In a statement, he expressed regret and offered his apologies, claiming he did not realise the inappropriateness of his actions. However, this apology may be too late to salvage his reputation for some.
As of March 21, 2022, Royal Antwerp appointed Overmars as the Director of Football, a decision that has already caused controversy. In the aftermath of his appointment, four sponsors of the club withdrew their support, signalling the profound impact this scandal has had on Overmars’ standing in the football world.