On Saturday evening, Ajax posted a straightforward 3-0 win against FC Groningen. Klaas Jan Huntelaar was the top scorer of the game with 2 goals. The 3rd goal was scored by Dusan Tadic.
Following the interland break, Ajax has a full agenda. The home game against FC Groningen kicked off an intense program with the Champions League game against AEK Athens on Wednesday (18:55 Dutch time) and PSV next Sunday. PSV has an equally grinding week, against FC Barcelona on Tuesday and then the Eredivisie top game in Eindhoven. The Eindhoven team kicked off their week with a 0-7 win against ADO Den Haag. It was up to Ajax’s now trusted line-up to reply accordingly.
Video referee decision: Tagliafico’s goal denied
Ajax seemed poised to take the lead in the 11th minute after Nico Tagliafico had sent the ball past keeper Sergio Padt. After referee Higler had consuted the video referee, the goal was declared offside, and disqualified.
Huntelaar from the point; 1-0
In the 18th minute, the first goal was scored. Tagliafico once again played a key role. He was hauled down by former Ajacied Deyovaisio Zeefuik and Klaas Jan Huntelaar – after extensively consulting with Dusan Tadic - took full advantage of the awarded penalty: 1-0. It was his 250th goal in competition play (Eredivisie, First Division, La Liga, Serie A and Bundesliga). This was the only goal scored in the first half.
Tadic most dangerous Ajacied
In the secondh half, Tadic stirred things up. After a pass from the left, Huntelaar’s receipt was a bit awkward and shortly after that, Serbian player outplayed 2 Groningen opponents, but none of his team mates were there to receive his pass. And when he set up the ball perfectly for Hakim Ziyech, the latter’s shot went wide. But in the 76th minute, he took matters into his own hands and scored the goal himself! Ziyech made the pass, Tadic scored, 3-0. Twelver minutes prior, Huntelaar had increased the score to 2-0.
Coach Erik ten Hag thus had the room to make a few substitutions and relieved Lasse Schöne, Dusan Tadic and Hakim Ziyech. Carel Eiting, Donny van de Beek en Zakaria Labyad were the substitutes. With Groningen, the loaned out Mateo Cassierra had already come onto the field. But none of the substitutes were able to change the 3-0 score.