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UEFA Champions League
25 October 2012
• Amsterdam ArenA, Amsterdam
Referee: S. Moen
• Attendance: 45743
S. de Jong 45'
N. Moisander 57'
C. Eriksen 68'
S. Nasri 22'
Dortmund have also beaten Real Madrid, so now top the group with seven points, while Jose Mourinho's men sit second with six. Ajax are now on three points while City are bottom with only one. Tough times ahead for the champions of England.
AND THAT'S FULL TIME! Roberto Mancini and his men are surely on the brink now. They have to win all three remaining games to finish with 10 points - the same amount they picked up last season and failed to qualify.
90' + 4'
City just can't find a way through at the moment.
90' + 3'
Ajax waste some precious seconds...
90' + 2'
Kolarov smashes it into the wall and Ajax clear. Surely no chance for City now.
90' + 1'
Free-kick in a central location, and they're arguing over who will take it, but Kolarov sets it down with purpose...
Yet another corner for City, but it's a terrible delivery from Tevez and cleared at the front post.
It's cleared, and City now have a throw-in as Ajax make a sub.
Another corner for City...
Dzeko gets on the end of Kolarov's cross, but it's an easy stop for Vermeer. Time almost up for City.
Balotelli brings out a fancy flick in the centre of the pitch and loses the ball. Not what City need at the moment. But Kolarov wins a corner...
Aguero nicks the ball on the edge of the area, but as he shoots he is moving away from goal and can't get his shot on target.
City starting to pile on the pressure, but are very exposed at the back and don't really look like making a breakthrough.
Kolarov curls it in at goal but Vermeer beats it away. He's played pretty well tonight, the Ajax keeper.
Balotelli wins a free-kick on the byeline, a chance to get the defenders up...
Yellow CardYaya Touré
Nasri takes down a long-ball superbly, and just as he pulls the trigger he goes down under a challenge from Moisander, with the visitors appealing for a penalty, but nothing doing from the referee.
Yellow CardAleksandar Kolarov
Has Mancini got his tactics right? City look all over the place since he switched to 3-5-2, and Ajax have absolutely lapped it up. Tevez is on now, with Balotelli about to enter the fray.
Dzeko with two chances in two minutes. Vermeer makes two great blocks though, and City still trail. This game has turned into complete end-to-end madness, an enthralling encounter.
Ajax should be out of sight! Sana bursts through on goal, but Joe Hart spreads himself magnificently to block his shot. That really would have been game over right there.
GOAL!!! City are in real trouble now. Their midfield hasn't adapted well to the change in system, but they have given Eriksen far too much room on the edge of the box. He runs practically around their defence before firing in a shot that Clichy wafts a leg at and deflects past Hart, who was headed in the other direction. Could the English club be headed out of the Champions League at the first hurdle again?
Kolarov gets involved for the first time, putting a nice ball into the box, but Milner can't quite get balanced, and his header from 12 yards flies over.
A raking long pass from Yaya Toure out to the right finds Milner, but his cross doesn't meet a City head in the box.
Joleon Lescott is being replaced here, with Aleksandr Kolarov coming on, in what should be a 3-5-2 from Roberto Mancini. A bold move, if nothing else.
City have a corner of their own, but as Vincent Kompany attempts a wild scissor-kick it is cleared away.
GOAL!!! A great corner whipped in by Eriksen and it's nodded home my centre-back Niklas Moisander. He had a free run at City's defence and beat Lescott far too easily in the air to head it into the far corner past the helpless Joe Hart.
Corner to Ajax...
Milner brings down De Jong in Ajax's half a touch cynically, much to the ire of the home fans, but there is no booking from the referee. A little lucky there, the City midfielder.
Babel fires in a shot, but it's blocked. With Richards in the corner, he tries to volley the ball clear, but only succeeds in hitting it directly into his face and behind for a corner - which is claimed well by Hart.
City have certainly started brightly, with Aguero breaking down the right and crossing to the far post, but Nasri can't beat Van Rhijn to the ball.
The second half is underway, and City almost take a lead in the first 15 seconds! Aguero gets the ball in the area, with Vermeer narrowing the angle, and with the Argentine striker at the byline he just can't find Dzeko in the centre.
So where does that leave both teams so far? With the score between Dortmund and Real Madrid also 1-1, the Spanish champions are currently topping the group with seven points, while the German maestros are on five points. City currently have two points to their name, with this being Ajax's solitary point so far. That can all change in the next 45 minutes of football, of course.
Half-time! Quite a strange first half, in all honesty. City were on the back foot for much of the opening 25 minutes, but will go in disappointed to be behind after De Jong's rocket finish.
AssistRicardo van Rhijn
GoalSiem de Jong
GOAL!!! An emphatic strike from Siem de Jong, after a nice move. It has to be said, Ricardo van Rhijn again has far too much space on the right-wing, and his whipped low cross is absolutely pummelled into the bottom corner by De Jong, a fabulous finish.
Babel fires in a shot from distance that dips and bounces before reaching Hart, but England's No.1 saves that calmly.
Eriksen is bearing down on City's defence but stumbles and looks caught in two minds before seeing his pass cut out. Schone then shoots wildly over from distance.
It's taken short and whipped in by Schone, but it's too low and Hart takes it after the first bounce. Poor delivery when they could have tested the visitors.
Free-kick in dangerous territory to Ajax here...
Milner is starting to pull the strings when he drifts into the centre, and is finding some nice passes out wide to Nasri and Aguero. This time the ball in is blocked though, and Ajax escape.
City fans are in good voice at the moment, but the hosts are finding some joy down their right flank, with Gael Clichy occasionally getting pulled out of position.
Yellow CardDaley Blind
Richards tests Vermeer after combining well with Dzeko, the Bosnian player sending the right-back through with a nice back-heel.
City have really settled into the game now and are dominating.
That goal has completely changed the flow of the game. Nasri is almost in again, but is crowded out by the Ajax defence.
GOAL!!! Great move from City, and they are one-up completely against the run of play. Micah Richards finds James Milner with a fine ball, and he drives towards the centre before laying it left for Samir Nasri to place into the far corner.
Eriksen is turning on the style, showing a brilliant touch to go past Gareth Barry before lashing a shot just wide of goal.
Siem de Jong almost gets on the end of a cross, but can't quite direct his header at goal.
Yaya Toure is back on the pitch after strapping up that ankle. In terms of action, Hart has to be alert to cut out a long pass, but it's a fairly low tempo game so far.
Yaya Toure is down receiving some treatment for an ankle knock.
Kompany makes a great tackle to block a through-ball to Ryan Babel. The Dutchman would have been in on goal if that hadn't been stopped.
City getting on the ball a bit more now, with Dzeko roaming and Aguero making a nuisance of himself.
Chance! Daley Blind's cross is knocked down by Lasse Schone, and Christian Eriksen's effort whistles past Joe Hart's post.
The visitors have their first shot of the night, but Dzeko's effort from long range trickled wide.
The hosts are starting to prod at the City defence more now, with a couple of crosses being whipped in but nothing troubling the back four so far.
Ajax have been keeping the ball fantastically well, but haven't really made inroads in an attacking sense. They don't seem to be playing an out-and-out striker either, with Christian Eriksen their most advanced attacker.
Ajax have an early corner, but it's easily cleared.
And we're off.
The Champions League anthem is over, so here we go...
Just under five minutes until kick-off now, in what could prove to be a pivotal game in the group. The pitch is looking fabulous, and the teams are about to join us.
So, Edin Dzeko starts up front for the visitors after his two-goal cameo against West Brom at the weekend, with Joleon Lescott and Micah Richards both making their first Champions League appearances of the season as both teams search for their first win of the group stages.
Manchester City: Hart; Richards, Kompany, Lescott, Clichy; Milner, Barry, Yaya Toure, Nasri; Aguero, Dzeko. Subs: Pantilimon, Kolarov, Nastasic, Evans, Sinclair, Tevez, Balotelli.
Ajax: Vermeer; Alderweireld, Moisander, Blind, Van Rhijn, C Poulsen, Eriksen, De Jong, Schone, Sana, Babel. Subs: Cillessen, Enoh, Sulejmani, Boerrigter, Veltman, Dijks, Fischer.
Hello, and welcome to Goal.com's LIVE! play-by-play coverage of the Champions League clash between Ajax and Manchester City in Amsterdam. We're a little under half-an-hour from kick-off, and we will be bringing you the team news shortly.
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