Dutch football champions, Ajax, have decided to melt their Eredivisie trophy in order to make small silver stars that would be sent to each of their season ticket holders for their support last season.
Erik ten Haag's side were crowned champions last month for the 20th time though the fans weren't present physically due to COVID-19 restrictions that forced games to be played behind closed doors.
This season, the Amsterdam team played 30 of its 34 matches in the Eredivisie in an empty stadium, clinching both the Dutch Cup and the Eredivisie title.
After an exceptional football year without supporters in the stadium, Ajax has decided to melt its champion trophy and create over 42,000 small champion stars, the club said.
As a sign of appreciation to the fans, all season ticket holders will receive a star weighing 3.45g, 0.06g of which has come from the trophy.
Each season ticket holder will receive their share of the champion trophy, or, as Ajax calls it: 'a piece of Ajax' beginning from Wednesday to allow the club to physically share the championship and the 35th trophy with fans.
General Director Edwin van der Sar: "This season, we have largely had to play without our fans. Well, without them sitting in the stands, at least. Despite this, we have felt their support every week. On the way to the stadium, on social media and in our personal contacts."
Ajax captain Dusan Tadic: "Playing in an empty stadium doesn't compare with an atmospheric Johan Cruijff Arena. We have really missed our supporters over the past season here in Amsterdam and during all our matches. We, therefore, want to dedicate this title to our fans and can't wait to play in front of them again."
The club revealed that the Royal Dutch Football Association (KNVB) has given Ajax a second trophy as an exception, giving the trophy a place in the trophy cabinet.
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