Kaj Sierhuis is someone that almost every Dutch football fan knows and that isn’t unjustified, this young striker has been tearing up the Dutch youth leagues for a while now, and there is a big chance that he will make his debut this season at Ajax.
Kaj Sierhuis is an incredible young striker who has been tearing up the Dutch/European youth leagues, his statistics are incredible and it is kind of weird that he still hasn’t made his debut for the first squad.
He is often compared to Klaas Jan Huntelaar and I can see the resemblance, but let’s start at the real beginning.
Kaj Sierhuis was born in Athens on May 27th,1998. His father ‘Cock Sierhuis’ was the president of AEK Athens for two years, that is why Sierhuis grew up in the Greek capital.
He stayed in Greece until the age of four, he moved back to Holland in December (2001), before joining WSV’30 when he was five.
He eventually got scouted by FC Volendam, AZ and Ajax. He was invited by Ajax for a trail and that period turned out to be a great success as he joined the academy and ended up in the third under-13 side.
But there was one problem – the coaches at the club couldn’t decide his best place on the pitch; some saw him as a striker but a few thought that he would be a good midfielder.
They eventually decided to keep him as a striker. Sierhuis made his debut for the under-19 squad in 2015, and it turned out to be one hell of a season as he played 43 games and scored 29 times and also chipped in four assists..
His second season was similar to his first; he played 22 games and scored 28 times, and this included his impressive performance against Breidablik and Paok Saloniki in the UEFA Youth League.
He showed what he is capable of and his very specific qualities.
Sierhuis is a real number nine, a pacey and tall striker who is physically impressive. He can perform under immense stress, is tall but also very agile and his runs are simply amazing.
But his shooting ability is his best attribute, he can put a lot of force behind the ball this results in very good longshots and a lot of goals in the box.
Sierhuis can also play as a right winger but his dribbling ability has some room for improvement and he mostly avoids one on one duels.
Is there a downside? Well, there are a few problems that need to be solved before he can reach the first team.
His stamina can be abhorrent at time and he has been fighting some injuries lately which have hampered his growth, and Ajax have already signed a backup for him in the under-19 squad (Danilo Pereira Da Silva).
His passing ability is poor right now; he often can’t reach the winger and this will be a problem in an Ajax squad (4-4-3). The team needs consistency out of a winger so he needs to improve this aspect of his game before making the definitive step to the main squad.
This next point isn’t his fault – he has a lot of competition in front of him (Mateo Cassierra/Kasper Dolberg/Klaas Jan Huntelaar/Danilo Pereira Da Silva).
How will progress from here? Well, Sierhuis has been moved to the under-21 squad and this will benefit him as he will be playing in the Dutch Second Division against a lot of older opponents, and he can now learn to adapt to playing with quick wingers who need deep/long balls.
It seems only a matter of time before he debuts in the main squad. Dolberg has been linked to a move for a while now and Klaas Jan Huntelaar is getting old, though his main competition is Mateo Cassierra and Cassierra right now is better than Sierhuis.
In terms of his future, Sierhuis has a lot of potential but he isn’t ready for the first squad just yet. However, I certainly think that he could become a top notch striker and a contender for the Dutch national side.