AMSTERDAM: A bad week for Ajax Amsterdam grew progressively worse after goalkeeper Andre Onana was suspended by European federation UEFA for failing a dope test last October.

The suspension applies at both national and international level.

An out-of-competition check found Furosemide in the Cameroon international’s urine, but Ajax claim Onana took it “unwittingly” after feeling unwell.
A club statement said: “On the morning of 30 October Onana did not feel well. He wanted to take a tablet. Unwittingly, however, he took Lasimac, a drug that his wife had previously been prescribed.
“Onana made a mistake with the product.  and mistakenly took his wife’s medicine, which ultimately led to UEFA’s action against the goalkeeper. The disciplinary body ruled that he did not intend to cheat. However, it believes that, according to the prevailing anti-doping rules, an athlete has a duty at all times to ensure that no prohibited substances enter the body.”
Ajax intend to appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport.
Managing director Edwin van der Sar said: “We explicitly renounce performance-enhancing drugs; we stand for a clean sport. This is a terrible setback, for Andre himself but certainly also for us as a club.

“Andre is a top goalkeeper who has proven his worth for Ajax for many years and is very popular with the fans. We had hoped for a conditional suspension or a much shorter one than this twelve months, because it was demonstrably not meant to strengthen his body and thus improve his performance.”

Ajax currently lead the Eredivisie by seven points from PSV Eindhoven. Later this month they face Lille in the Europa League.

Onana has been an Ajax fixture for five years after joining from Barcelona in 2015. He played every minute of their Champions League group-stage campaign, where they finished third behind Liverpool and Atalanta to drop down to the Europa League.

Earlier this week Ajax were told that new record signing Sebastien Haller would not be eligible to play in the remainder of the 2020/21 Europa League campaign because of an administrative error.

Haller arrived last month from West Ham for £20.2m. He will now be available this season for only domestic competition.