Last updated on September 19, 2019
Ajax started their Champions League campaign with a thumping 3-0 win over Lille on Tuesday to ignite hopes of another deep run from the contest after their thrilling cost into the semi-finals final season.
Aims from Quincy Promes, Edson Alvarez and Nicolas Tagliafico watched a spirited Lille side that came to the game after the arrest of 300 of the fans following unrest earlier in the afternoon.
The away fans were detained near the Johan Cruyff Arena hours before the Group H game, together with all the ANP national news bureau reporting which fans were walking across the subway lines, forcing officials to stop rail traffic and exude two channels for a brief while.
“We wanted to take all three things and get off to a fantastic start,” explained Promes, a close-season registering from Sevilla.
“Considering that the performances last year, the bar were set high, and people were asking if we can do it again this year. I believe that a 3-0 success indicates that we could.”
A feverish first half saw the two sides struck each other with assault and counter-attack, along with the hosts thought they’d caught the 13th-minute guide when Hakim Ziyech brilliantly shot Dusan Tadic’s pass and fired a potent shot, just for its Moroccan to see in anguish as the ball rattled off the post and bar.
But they had a deserved lead five minutes after, the remarkable Promes beating a dawdling Lille defense to Tagliafico’s looping cross and adapting the opener off the post.
Promes afterward had a fantastic opportunity to double Ajax’s lead four minutes before the break as he charged onto a pinpoint long haul from Alvarez, but could not get enough on his volleyed end to ship it on Lille stopper Mike Maignan.
Lille pushed and could’ve pulled one back through Jonathan Bamba until Tagliafico secured the three points with a bullet header just after the hour mark to depart a frustrated Lille underside of this group and home lovers dreaming of the following year of European play.
“It was a wonderful night for Ajax and the lovers, we played with a great Lille facet, we made a couple of mistakes that nearly cost us precious, but our goalkeeper was there to rescue us because we place ourselves in tough conditions,” said Ten Hag.
“We must be vigilant in our weak moments in the remainder of the contest, but I am pleased with my staff, which sometimes played excellent football.”