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ADO Den Haag
March 25, 2012
• 10:30 AM
• Amsterdam ArenA, Amsterdam
Referee: P. Vink
• Attendance: 51207
I. Aissati 56'
S. de Jong 63'
PSV on the other hand are the league's number four, five points off the pace, and the Eindhoven side face a tough task to get back into the Eredivisie title race.
Ajax now sit second in the Eredivisie with 55 goals from 27 games, trailing leaders AZ by only one point.
There wasn't too much to enjoy for the fans in the opening 45 minutes, but an excellent second half more than made up for it. Both sides with a number of chances before Aissati broke the deadlock, and PSV never really looked like getting back in it after that.
The referee blows his whistle for the last time as Ajax beat their title rivals 2-0 after an entertaining second half.
90' + 2'
OOOHHHH!! That looked dangerous as PSV almost pegged one back. Pieters with a good cross for Vennegoor, but the experienced striker fails to connect. The Ajax fans breathe a sigh of relief as that surely means it's game over now.
We're going to have three minutes of added time here in the Amsterdam ArenA.
OOOHHH!!! Big chance for Ajax to make it three in the closing stages of the game. Anita escapes the offside trap, but Tyton does enough to push him out wide. The midfielder then finds Aissati, but the former PSV man's shot is blocked.
Eriksen with a dangerous free kick from the right side of the area, but De Jong only just misses the ball and Marcelo manages to clear the ball.
Jan Vennegoor of Hesselink
Yellow CardTim Matavz
And that's the fifth yellow card of the game for PSV as Matavz goes into the book after pulling Vertonghen's jersey. The striker immediately makes way for Vennegoor of Hesselink.
It has really not been Mertens' game either. The winger tries to reach Matavz with a lofted ball over the Ajax defence, but he overhits it and Vermeer collects with ease.
Matavz tries his luck from a narrow angle, but his left-footed shot goes harmlessly wide. PSV really need to get their striker involved more if they want to get back into the match.
A good run forward from Eriksen before he sets up Ebecilio. The substitute immediately sends in a cross for Bulykin, but the towering striker can't connect.
PSV slowly taking over the initiative in Amsterdam, but they seem to lack the creativity to really create something at the moment.
Crucial interception from Alderweireld! Strootman tries to find Matavz with an intelligent through ball, but the centre-back shows excellent positioning.
Good individual action from Lens as he goes past Blind on the right, but Enoh comes to the rescue for Ajax before the winger can get a cross in.
Cocu seemed to have got things back on track with a double win over Heerenveen after replacing Rutten as head coach, but a loss in the ArenA will be a huge blow for PSV.
PSV still unable to trouble the Ajax back-line here. Corner for the away side, but it once again leads to nothing.
Penalty GoalSiem de Jong
GOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLL!!! 2-0 Ajax and it's Siem de Jong who adds his name to the score sheet as he coolly slots home from 12 yards.
Yellow CardAtiba Hutchinson
Spot kick for Ajax as Aissati goes down inside the area after a foul from Marcelo. Trouble for PSV here...
Hutchison is the third PSV player to go into the book after a foul on Aissati.
Stunning goal from the attacking midfielder as he collects the ball near the corner flag before curling the ball over Tyton in the top corner. Not too impressive from the Pole, but a fantastic goal nonetheless.
GOOOAAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLLL!!!!! 1-0 Ajax and it's Aissati who opens the scoring against his former team.
And that's the substitute we had already anticipated. Lukoki makes way for Ebecilio after a disappointing display.
This time it's Ajax again with an opportunity to make it 1-0! The impressive Van Rhijn finds Eriksen with a low cross from the right, but the playmaker's shot goes just over the bar.
Another good chances for PSV there!!! Matavz sets up the onrushing Labyad on the edge of the area with an intelligent pass, but the Morocco international lets the ball bounce away from him and Vermeer is in time to steal the ball off his feet.
Ebecilio is already warming up on the sidelines for Ajax. The winger is likely to replace Lukoki on the right as the latter continues to struggle.
These opening four minutes to the second half have already offered more entertainment than the entire first half! Let's hope both teams can keep this up.
AAAHHH!!! Another good chance and this time Ajax almost open the scoring. Eriksen gets past Hutchinson and Marcelo after cutting inside from the left, but his low shot only hits the side-netting.
OOOHHHH!!! Brilliant start to the second half for PSV as Matavz almost breaks the deadlock. Mertens dances past two or three opponents before finding the former Groningen star with a nice through pass, but Vermeer does just enough to prevent the opener.
The players are back on the pitch as the second half is about to kick off. No changes on either side.
Ajax have clearly been the better side of the two, and have enjoyed the majority of possession. However, the PSV defence was never really troubled and 0-0 after 45 minutes is the logical result after a disappointing first half.
And with that, the first half comes to an end as the referee blows his whistle for half-time.
Yellow CardKevin Strootman
OOOHHHH!!! Best chance of the match so far as Vertonghen takes the free kick and blasts a shot past the wall that seemed destined to hit the net, only for Tyton to show his class and deny the Belgian.
Strootman receives a yellow card for a reckless challenge on Eriksen, and Ajax get a free kick some 30 yards away from the PSV goal.
That looked promising there for the hosts as Alderweireld sends a cross to the far post, where Blind and Enoh were waiting. Nevertheless, Tyton rushes off his line and collects the pass.
Former Netherlands international and Ajax goalkeeper Edwin van der Sar is watching the game from the stands, and the 41-year-old seems rather bored. It's not the spectacular match VDS was hoping for.
OOOHHHH!!! It's been a disappointing encounter so far, but that at least forced the goalkeeper into action. Aissati cuts inside from the left before unleashing a powerful shot at the near post, but Tyton is not too impressed and collects the shot with relative ease.
Ajax have not been too impressive so far today, but the Amsterdam giants have won their last six games on the trot. Only Arsenal and Barcelona are on a better winning streak in Europe's top leagues with seven consecutive victories.
For a moment it looked as if Lukoki could take advantage of Pieters' heavy first touch after a long ball from Vertonghen, but the attacker fails to control the ball and doesn't get a shot in.
Unfortunately for the young Dane, he fails to lift his shot over the wall and the chance goes begging.
Free kick for Ajax in what could prove to be an interesting position. Eriksen steps up and seems to fancy his chance...
Neither of the two strikers has seen much of the ball in the opening 30 minutes. De Jong is being kept quiet by Marcelo, while Matavz is having a difficult afternoon versus Alderweireld.
Lukoki once more loses possession when he tries to get past Pieters. It's really not been his game so far!
Decent attack from PSV there as Toivonen finds Strootman in the centre of the pitch. The holding midfielder sets up Mertens on the left wing, but he fails to find Matavz with the cross.
Yellow CardDries Mertens
Eriksen tries to find Alderweireld from the following free kick, but his cross is too high for the Belgian defender and goes out for a goal-kick.
Finally some 'excitement' in Amsterdam as Mertens is booked after a late lunge on Anita.
Ajax have 63 % possession so far, but they have yet to create their first real chance.
We're halfway through the first half and PSV get their first corner of the match after Alderweireld beats Matavz to be ball. However, the Ajax defence clear the ball with ease.
PSV enjoying a spell of possession now for the first time, but they're eventually forced into playing the long ball, and Ajax take over again.
Frank de Boer expresses his dismay with Lukoki's performance so far and urges the young winger to try and take on Pieters more often.
Free kick in a dangerous position for the reigning champions as Toivonen brings down Anita. Eriksen behind the ball, but his shot hits the wall and goes out for a corner. The following set piece leads to nothing as De Jong heads over.
PSV seem to be happy to sit back and allow Ajax possession for now. Wijnaldum and Mertens playing much deeper than we've come to get used of the duo as the guests seem to choose for a 4-4-1-1 formation with Toivonen playing off lone striker Matavz.
Lukoki tries to take on Pieters inside the area, but the PSV defender is clearly not impressed as he bullies his opponent off the ball.
First good chance of the match there as Lukoki sends in a superb cross from the right for Aissati, but Hutchinson is alert and clears the danger.
Labyad looks dangerous there as he skips past two opponents, but Alderweireld is having none of it, and wins the ball with an excellent tackle.
Ajax are not allowing PSV any space as they are pressing high on the pitch. Eriksen intercepts Bouma's pass before reaching Blind down the left, but the full-back fails to get a cross in.
PSV are slowly finding their feet in the ArenA as Labyad dribbles his way through the Ajax defence, but the one-two with Wijnaldum doesn't lead to anything.
Tyton boots the ball forward for Toivonen, who finds Matavz, but the Slovenia international is easily dispossessed by Alderweireld.
PSV struggling to clear the ball here as Ajax get three corners within the opening two minutes. No serious danger for the Eindhoven side though.
Ajax immediately enjoy a long spell of possession before Vertonghen rushes forward. The defender sets up De Jong, but his cross from the right is deflected out for a corner.
The referee has blown his whistle for the first time and Ajax have kicked off.
Ajax sit joint second in the league table at the moment with 52 points from 26 games, trailing leaders AZ by four points ahead of today's game. PSV, meanwhile, are the league's number four with 51 points from 26 matches.
PSV coach Phillip Cocu has opted for the following starting XI: Tyton; Hutchinson, Bouma, Marcelo, Pieters; Labyad, Toivonen, Strootman; Wijnaldum, Matavz, Mertens
Ajax start the match in the following 4-3-3 formation: Vermeer; Van Rhijn, Alderweireld, Vertonghen, Blind; Anita, Eriksen, Enoh; Lukoki, De Jong, Aissati
Good afternoon and welcome to Goal.com's LIVE coverage of the Eredivisie clash between Ajax and PSV at the Amsterdam ArenA.
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