|Org||xxxx National Team|
|Club as Player||Bournemouth|
: 2019 07 12 Bournemouth defender Nathan Ake has also been linked with a move away, but chief executive Neill Blake is determined to retain Bournemouth’s stars
2019 11 16 Retrieve
[Nathan Ake thinks that Juventus’ Matthijs de Ligt has all the same gifts as Ballon d’Or frontrunner Virgil van Dijk] De Ligt is still so young but he has played so many games in top-flight football and for the Dutch national team. It’s amazing what he is doing at the moment. When you go to a new country and a new club, especially a big club like Juventus, and you’re 19-20 years old, it’s going to be a change. He scored [against Torino], which is really good for him, but everyone has full confidence in him. As you can see, he’s a great player. He’s quick, strong for his age, very good in the air and on the ball he is very good. He scores so many from set-pieces so he’s got a lot of the same attributes as Van Dijk
[Van Dijk will lead his nation into those games as captain and Ake explained why the Liverpool star deserves to be named in the same breath as the likes of Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo] The way he has been playing in recent seasons in crazy. He has made Liverpool and the Dutch team very good sides - it’s his presence, leadership qualities and the way he has been playing over the last few years. He deserves all the praise he’s getting. In my opinion, he 100% deserves to be among those players that are competing for the Ballon d’Or. Forwards score goals and stuff like that but he helps his teams in other ways.
He has been one of the main guys making sure Liverpool get clean sheets. He helped them reach and win the Champions League final. He’s the captain of the national team. He’s such a big presence. He’s been an important player in every squad he’s been in. He has a massive personality but he is such a nice guy off the pitch. He’s calm and chilled. When he’s on the pitch, he’s a demanding leader. He’s not scary if you know him, but if you don’t know him… maybe! Our strikers would say that it’s very tough to play against him because he’s strong, fast and reads the game very well
[on Donyell Malen] Donyell Malen’s a natural goalscorer. He’s been in the squad the last two times and he scored straight away. He’s a massive talent. He’s still young, but to be so young and score so many goals for PSV is great. If he keeps going like this with PSV and the national team then I think he can make the step to playing in a big league
[On a personal level, Ake is closing in on a dream of his own as he looks to qualify for his first major tournament with the Netherlands] It would be great to make the Euros. [Missing the World Cup] was painful for everyone in Holland. The buzz at the moment is very good, the team looks good and the manager is doing well. To be around that, for me, is great. I hope to make the Euros and be a part of that
2019 11 20 Retrieve
[Bournemouth defender Nathan Ake was also asked for his thoughts on Pochettino’s dismissal after scoring in Netherland’s 5-0 win over Estonia] What do I think about it? It’s hard to say. These things tend to happen at these top clubs. It’s very unexpected because he had such a great year last season. This year not as much, but he’s still a top manager
2019 11 22 Retrieve
[Nathan Ake insists that Bournemouth’s best players realise what Eddie Howe is building at the club] I am 100% happy with my decision. Looking back now I have learned so much and I have played so many Premier League games. I think it was a great decision, yes. I can only speak for myself. At the moment I feel like I am still learning. I keep developing and playing. I think a lot of the players feel this. We have good players like Callum Wilson and Joshua King here as well.
Ryan Fraser did really well. We all stayed and we are all playing together. We feel like we can achieve good things if we keep working hard. A lot of the talk is just speculation anyway. The only thing we can do is work hard and perform for the club. This is probably the best squad we have had in the last few years. I think the players we have got, on the bench and injured… we have Junior Stanislas, David Brooks and Andrew Surman are still injured. We have so much talent. The signings like Philip Billing have come in and helped us so much. The manager never stops or stands still. He wants to go higher and make the club grow as a whole
All the young players playing together is great to see and they are playing well. They play good football. The manager is helping them a lot. There’s a buzz over there. It is a special group. The players they have now are so good but you could see that from their youth. They were winning so many things all the time such as the FA Youth Cup and the UEFA Youth League. You can see that Chelsea’s youth was great. You just wait for that opportunity and now it’s come. I am buzzing for everyone. I was so happy for the decision to go there [to train with Chelsea]. I think I learned so much there. I played with so many good players. I won things myself in the youth teams as well. So, for me, it was great to be there. I played with Ruben Loftus-Cheek, Nathaniel Chalobah and Dominic Solanke. There are so many good players there
[Ake also discussed Solanke’s struggles in front of goal at Bournemouth] I think with the games he has been playing he has been playing really well and working so hard for the team. The only thing that is missing is the goal but I am 100% sure it will come because he is such a naturally gifted player. Technically he is so good, he holds it up well, handles the ball well and his finishing is good. He has all the attributes so it will come for him. He just needs to keep doing what he is doing. Work hard and train hard. That’s what he is doing now