AMSTERDAM (AP) — Ajax and United States defender Sergino Dest is leaving the Amsterdam club’s winter training camp in Qatar, amid high tensions in the Mideast, the club announced on Thursday.
Ajax said Dest asked to leave the camp because “he did not feel comfortable.” The club said it “understood the request and honored it.” He will continue training with the club’s juniors in Amsterdam.
Ajax is in Qatar — the 2022 World Cup host — for training and two friendlies during the Dutch league winter break.
Dest’s request to leave came a day after Iran launched missile attacks on two military bases in Iraq that house U.S. troops. The missiles were a retaliation following an American drone strike that killed Qassem Soleimani, the leader of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard’s powerful Quds Force.
Dest, who has a Surinamese-American father and Dutch mother, decided last year to play for the United States instead of the Netherlands.