Shattered. That’s how I felt, after Sunday’s draw against Excelsior. Euphoria in Europe, disappointment in the Eredivisie. The weekend had started pretty bad too, as Jong Ajax lost out to NAC Breda with 4-3. Luckily, the U19’s were able to continue their good season in winning ways, but they were the only bright spot in this rather grim weekend. Alongside another Kluivert scoring for the senior side.
As mentioned above, Jong Ajax played NAC in Breda past Friday. As if so often the case for the reserves this season, they were the side in control of the ball in the opening minutes. NAC were the first to create a dangerous chance though, nearly punishing Ajax losing possession with a razor sharp counter attack. Nortber Ablas stood up to save Keizer’s men from conceding though.
As a few chances for the home side followed, Jong Ajax were the one’s opening the score. A well-played pass by Carel Eiting found David Neres, whom slotted home to score his first ever Ajax goal. That marked the beginning of a JA-offensive, with Matteo Cassierra nearly scoring the second and many chances following. NAC eventually clawed themselves back in the game though, with Cyriel Dessers pulling it back to an even 1-1 score.
Just before half time, Mazraoui was found inside the box by a cross and headed it home to bring Ajax back in the lead. That new-found advantage didn’t last all to long though, as at the very of the first half end, Manu Garcia found the net for the home side and sent both sides into the dressing room with 2 goals each.
The second half was initiated by NAC and not much later, they grabbed the lead as Cyriel Dessers made his second of the night with a tough shot into the top of the goal. On top of that, a low and hard shot by Arno Verschueren proved to outdo Ablas, putting NAC into a 4-2 lead just 10 minutes after half time. A 62nd goal by Matteo Cassierra got Ajax back into gear, but it proved to little to late as NAC went on to win the match with 4-3.
Luckily there also something to cheer for going down at De Toekomst this weekend. For example, the U19’s game against NEC/FC Oss’ age-mates. Ajax started out strongly, firing a few shots at goal early on but missing the goal scoring threat inside the box. It eventually took 34 minutes until Ajax scored the first goal of the game, but the wait was worth it as Zian Flemming found the back of the net with an amazing lob over the goalie’s head. 6 minutes later, Noa Lang sent Lopez into space and the forward found the goal one-on-one, putting a 2-0 lead on the board before half time.
The second half was a lot worse though, with both sides not creating an awful lot and Dani de Wit leaving the pitch with an injury. Around the 70th minute, the away side got a few chances to score but were denied by De Lange. In the 81st minute, Zian Flemming decided the game by scoring his second from a well-prepared free kick variation. 3-0 was the full time score.