Tainio makes Ajax switch

Tainio’s contract with the Premier League outfit was terminated by

mutual consent on transfer deadline day, allowing the Finland

international to move to Holland. The 30-year-old midfielder will

be reunited in Amsterdam with Martin Jol, who signed Tainio for

Tottenham in 2005. The ex-Spurs coach kept tabs on Tainio after

leaving White Hart Lane in 2007 and thanked Sunderland for helping

the move go through. “I am very happy we could strength our squad

on the final day of the international transfer market,” the Ajax

boss told the club’s official website. “Teemu is someone who can do

his job in the midfield. He is a winner, a player with a good

mentality. I have worked with him at Tottenham Hotspur and

continued to follow him. “I am happy the board at Sunderland was

willing to co-operate despite a running deal with Teemu. Therefore

it was possible for us to sign Teemu.” Tainio made 83 appearances

in three years with Spurs before leaving for Sunderland in 2008 for

an undisclosed fee. But the versatile Finn, who has made 51

international appearances, played just 22 games for the Black Cats

before going on loan to Birmingham last season. Tainio now has the

opportunity to face former club Auxerre in the Champions League

group stage, where Ajax have also been drawn against giants AC

Milan and Real Madrid.