Dutch striker Sydney Hooijdonk has praised Nigerian Ajax defender Calvin Bassey for his exceptional qualities, which he says stand the Nigerian out among other defenders in the Eredivisie.

The Super Eagles defender signed a five-year deal with Dutch club Ajax Amsterdam from Scottish club Glasgow Rangers in last year’s summer window for a reported €23m deal.

The highly-rated defender made 39 appearances across all competitions last season for the Lucky Ajax.

Amid Bassey criticisms, Hooijdonk, who was last season’s Eredivisie third-highest goalscorer, was full of accolades for the former Rangers man, noting that the Nigeria international is tough and strong in the defence line.

“He is often ridiculed in The Netherlands, but I think Bassey is really tough as a defender,” the 23-year-old Dutch striker told Voetbal International.

“I know that I am certainly not the only Eredivisie striker who thinks so. He is fast, strong and he looks good, I thought that was a really difficult match.”

Bassey helped Ajax finish third in the 2022/23 Eredivisie league and booked qualification for the Europa League playoffs.

Also, the 23-year-old played a significant role in Glasgow Rangers’ 55th league title victory and won the 2022 Scottish Cup, while also playing a huge role in helping The Gers reach the UEFA Europa League final in Seville, before switching to Holland.

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