The Feyenoord boss, six points behind the Amsterdam club, has conceded defeat in the Eredivisie title race, praising the work of his counterpart in creating an indomitable side
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"They are so strong and so stable that I did not expect it to go wrong for them," he told Voetbal International.
"I think congratulations are in order. They were the best this season, the most complete. De Boer did a great job and for that you have to show appreciation.
"[If we finish second] we will have succeeded in playing at the top once again, even having lost important players. Our performance has improved since last year. But, for sure, we will not be champions."
Kolbeinn Sigthorsson, Christian Eriksen and Derk Boerrigter all scored for Ajax in the Philips Stadion victory last Sunday.