On Sunday afternoon, Ajax posted a simple win against AZ. In the Johan Cruijff ArenA, the final score was 5-0. It was nice to see five different names on the scoreboard, and that Ajax once again maintained a clean sheet.
After playing 4 consecutive away games, Ajax finally played on its home ground. In his starting line-up, oach Erik ten Hag selected, among others, Kasper Dolberg, Donny van de Beek and Max Wöber. David Neres, Klaas Jan Huntelaar and Frenkie de Jong started on the bench. De Jong missed last week’s game at Bayern Munich due to an injury, and he was also a question mark against AZ.
Ajax made a quick start, only needing 2 minutes and 30 seconds to score the opening goal. On a pass from Dusan Tadic, Van de Beek reached the ball just a bit sooner than Kasper Dolberg, who was heading for it as well. He shot past keeper Marco Bizot.
But AZ didn’t lie down and went on the hunt for the tying goal. But the Alkmaar team didn’t pose any serious threats. On one of its few shots on goal – a beauty by Marko Vejinovic – Andre Onana, celebrating his 100thAjax game, made a good save. Unfortunately, Bizot did the same a minute later when Lasse Schöne, playing his 250thAjax game, set up the ball perfectly for Nico Tagliafico. The Argentine decided on a overhead shot. Bizot, with more luck than anything, made the save.
Another quick goal!
Ajax only needed 3 minutes into the second half to score another goal. A shot by Ziyech was badly blocked by Bizot, and Dolberg was there to take the shot, scoring the 2-0 goal. But, unlike in the first half, this goal was followed up by another one. In the 53rdminute, Ricardo van Rhijn deflected a shot by Daley Blind in such a way that left Bizot unable to make the save, 3-0. AZ was heading to the slaughterhouse and seemed poised to go down by 4 goals, but a penalty given by Higler was later cancelled by the video referee, due to offside by Dolberg.
It was the centre forward’s last play. An hour into the game, Klaas Jan Huntelaar came onto the field. But it was Ziyech who was in the spotlight. In the 62ndminute, he slalomed into the 4thgoal! In the 70thminute, Ten Hag brought in Neres to substitute for Blind. It was also a great night for Perr Schuurs. He came in 9 minutes before time for Wöber, making his Eredivisie debut for Ajax.
Ajax clearly outplayed AZ. The home team made a great combination 6 minutes before time via Ziyech, Neres and Tadic. The Serbian player scored, 5-0. Ziyech almost scored the 6-0 goal but he hit the post, and after that, injured his hamstring. It was Onana’s 11thclean sheet and the Ajacieds can continue onto their international obligations with confidence. On October 20, sc Heerenveen is on the agenda, and after that, 2 tough home games against Benfica and Feyenoord await.