A superior Ajax has defeated the Eredivisie’s number 4 team, FC Utrecht, by a score of 4-0 at home. Donny van de Beek was the most important player of the game, scoring two goals.
Erik ten Hag had complimentary words for his opponent prior to the home game: “This is the best Utrecht team in many years”, said the coach on camera about his former club, where John van den Brom is now head coach.
The Ajax coach came over from Utrecht during the 2017-2018 winter break, and brought Zakaria Labyad over from Utrecht a few months later. But the midfielder has not really been featured in the coach’s plans. But this Sunday, he was given a starting spot for the first time this season, replacing the injured David Neres, and he showed that he was more than capable of keeping up.
The Utrecht native playing for the Amsterdam team seemed to put Ajax in the 1-0 lead in the 7th minute, after both Daley Blind and Dusan Tadic had had good opportunities. But the ball had passed the back line before Tadic’s assist, and the goal was rightfully disallowed. After Nico Tagliafico had sent a header just wide of the goal, the goal finally came in the 14th minute. Tadic broke away, and, with a flaming shot, Donny van de Beek scored the opening goal: 1-0.
3-0 at halftime
Eleven minutes later, the 2-0 goal came. Daley Blind put Mark van de Maarel on the wrong foot in the Ajax defense; play was allowed to continue, Ajax transitioned well and Tadic went on to score Ajax’s 100th Eredivisie goal of 2019. Just before the break, the score reached 3-0 when Van de Beek sent an assist by Labyad past Maarten Paes.
Martinez scores the 4-0
In the second half, Ajax continued its playful game and, initially, its flurry of attacks did not pay off, thanks in part to good keeping by Peas. With Dest in for Mazraoui, Ajax benefitted from fresh legs on the field; the substitute witnessed first-hand how Lisandro Martinez scored the 4-0 on a header from a corner.
Labyad’s time was up after 75 minutes of play, and he could look back on a great game. Noa Lang was brought in to complete the final fifteen minutes. No more goals were scored. Ajax had an outstanding end to its third block. Next week will be interland football, and Eredivisie play resumes on Saturday, November 23rd , with Ajax – Heracles.