Ajax lost again to Brighton & Hove Albion in the Europa League on Thursday: 0-2. The team from Amsterdam suffered their first defeat under coach John van ‘t Schip and remain last in the Europa League group.
The opening goal came in the early stages, after a big mistake by Silvano Vos. Ansu Fati concluded. Just after half time, Ajax had to accept a second goal, when Simon Adingra scored.
A place in the next round of the Europa League will be a difficult story for Ajax. The difference with Brighton is seven points. Olympique Marseille took the lead in Group B later on Thursday by beating AEK Athens 0-2. As a result, Ajax must win against Marseille and AEK in any case to keep a view of wintering. The number three in the group goes to the Conference League.
Ajax also lost to Brighton (2-0) on English soil two weeks ago, although this time the Amsterdam team asserted themselves more offensively. There will be further matches with Olympique Marseille (November 30, away) and AEK (December 14, home).
For Ajax, which suffered its first defeat under Van ‘t Schip after two victories, the season continues on Sunday with an away match against Almere City. The Dutch record champion hopes to continue his rise in the Eredivisie.
Loss of ball Vos leads to 0-1
In the first minutes of the match it was clear on Thursday that Ajax had more attacking intentions than two weeks ago in England. Pinpricks from Steven Berghuis and Kristian Hlynsson made the ArenA hopeful.
Those hopes were dashed not much later when Vos – he replaced the injured Branco van den Boomen – suddenly lost the ball in a dangerous spot. FC Barcelona mercenary Fati gratefully took advantage and put Brighton at 0-1.
The combative Ajax only came close to the Brighton goal sporadically in the remainder of the first half, without really testing goalkeeper Bart Verbruggen. On the other hand, Ajax goalkeeper Diant Ramaj also had little to do.
Brighton also scored quickly after the break
Ajax also started with good intentions after the break, but again had to concede an early goal. Brighton played football easily through the Amsterdam defense, Adingra finished beautifully: 0-2.
Trainer Van ‘t Schip made offensive changes – he brought on Carlos Forbs, Chuba Akpom and later Georges Mikautadze – in the hope of the tying goal. Ajax kept trying and came very close twice through Brian Brobbey.
The striker first shot wide from close range and later was unlucky that the ball did not enter through both posts. Not long after that last chance, Forbs and Berghuis also had a chance, but defeat – and thus reduced European prospects – turned out to be inevitable.
The post first appeared on www.nu.nl