Ajax still in race for quarter finals
Ajax lost in then Stade Vélodrome on Thursday against Olympique Marseille: 2-1. ,,A result we can live with”, said Marco van Basten. ,,Especially because we played with ten for a long time.”
Toby Alderweireld in his first start.
Marco van Basten's team lost, but can fly back to Amsterdam on Friday with a good feeling. After Gregory van der Wiel had been sent off in the first half, with Ajax 2-1 down, the Amsterdammers held on in the remaining time and gave themselves a good chance to get through to the next round. of the UEFA Cup. ,,You're never ahppy with a loss”, Van Basten said. ,,But I have to give the guys a compliment for the way they fought.”
Toby Alderweireld was the most surprising starter, in defence. ,,Toby did a good job'', Van Basten said. ,,Hie stood his gound. These are big games. He passed the ball well and he was reliable on defence.''
It was a tumultuous match. In the first half, many things happened. Ajax were the first to react. Urby Emanuelson touched to Miralem Sulejmani, who found Luis Suarez.The striker had his wrong foot forward to make it 0-1. On the other side, Benoit Cheyrou was allowed to strike and he made it 1-0.
Marseille doubled their lead after 32 minutes when Niang made a great goal behind his leg. Not long after that, Eyong Enoh was brought down in the box. Ajax got a penallty, which was fired in by Suarez. Only a little later, Ajax were rattled by Gregory van der Wiel's second yellow card. Van Basten took off Urby Emanuelson and brought on Bruno Silva . Earier, Rasmus Lindgren had to be taken off and replaced by Robbert Schilder. Lindgren suffered a concussion.
In the second half, Ajax mostly tried to keep it 2-1. Kenneth Vermeer saved a shot by placing it upon the post in the 72nd minute. Almost Leonardo made it sweeter for Ajax when he got free in the end. Suarez's replacement just did not make it. Ajax still have chance , though, to make it to the next round when they host Olympioiquwe on Wednesday.