Appie Nouri: Ajax reaches $8.9 million compensation agreement with family

Nouri collapsed during a pre-season friendly match against Werder Bremen in the summer of 2017, resulting in serious and permanent brain damage.

Appie, as he is known among his former teammates, was only 20 years old when he fell into an induced coma.

“Ajax later confirmed that Nouri’s medical care at a vital stage on the pitch was insufficient and, as a business owner, he accepted responsibility for the consequences,” the club said in a statement.

Ajax added: “The Nouri family and Ajax have now reached an agreement regarding the compensation to be paid by the club. The proceedings brought by the Nouri family before the KNVB arbitration committee as a result of this amicable settlement have now been terminated.”

“In the arbitration proceedings, the extent of the damage caused, among other things, by the loss of working capacity and compensation for damages has been a matter of debate. The agreement reached regarding these losses relates to a net compensation of €7,850,000.”

The club said in the statement that it had also compensated the family for the costs incurred to care for Nuri since the accident and will continue to do so.

“It is good that an agreement is reached, so we can close this issue,” said Edwin van der Sar, Ajax CEO. “We are all aware that the suffering of Abdelhak and his loved ones is not over. The situation is still very sad, and that is how we feel here at Ajax as well.

“We greatly appreciate the way the Abdelhak family takes care of him day and night with so much love and care. And when I visit him, I am always welcomed with open arms by the family. This also goes for my other teammates at Ajax and we very much appreciate that.”

“The bond between Ajax and the Nouri family is an enduring bond.”

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Van der Sar added that Nouri’s No. 34 shirt had been retired by the club – meaning no player would ever wear it again – and given to the former footballer’s family.

“This summer, five years will pass since Abd al-Haqq was struck by a terrible fate,” said Muhammad, Nuri’s father. “The past few years have been overshadowed by his care.

“In addition to all the difficult moments, this also resulted in a lot of very meaningful things for us. Especially the realization that for many people Abdul Haq is the embodiment of fraternity and brotherhood, which is very comforting.

“The participation and commitment of Ajax was also very important [during] years said. Ajax has been an integral part of our lives since Abdelhak was very young. We cherish the relationship with the people within the club as well as with the loyal fans.”

In 2018, his family said they were encouraged by the slight improvement in his condition when he began to wake up, and Nouri has since returned to a specially air-conditioned home.
The tribute was placed near the hospital where Abdelhak Nouri received treatment.

His brother Abdul Rahim said in 2020, despite being able to communicate by smiling and raising his eyebrows, Nuri is still bedridden.

“He’s just awake. He sleeps and sneezes and eats and burps, but it’s not like getting out of bed,” he said on Dutch TV series De Virield Diet Door on Thursday.

“We talk to him like he’s not sick. We take him in our conversations and we watch football with him in the living room, for example. Then he watches.

“I noticed he likes it a lot. He often shows feelings. Sometimes he’s emotional, but often there’s a smile. It makes us good. It makes you really appreciate the smile.”

Ben Church and Martin Edelman contributed to this report.