Ajax crashed out of the Champions League qualifiers at the third round after slipping to a 5-4 aggregate defeat to Rapid Vienna, and now face a battle to qualify for the Europa League.
Despite having two away goals in their favour after a 2-2 draw at the Ernst Happel Stadion, Ajax conceded simple goals from Rapid’s Robert Beric and Louis Schaub in the first half to squander home advantage and leave themselves with a mountain to climb in the second period.
A stunning volley from Arkadiusz Milik and a Nemanja Gudelj strike from the edge of the box levelled the tie at 4-4 on aggregate with 75 minutes played, but Schaub struck again just two minutes later, curling a fine effort into the top corner of the net to end coach Frank de Boer’s hopes of Champions League qualification.
It is the first time in six seasons that Ajax have failed to reach the group stage.
Elsewhere on Tuesday, Monaco cruised through to the play-offs with an emphatic 7-1 aggregate win over Young Boys.
Leonardo Jardim’s side went into the home leg of their third-round tie with a 3-1 cushion and, after a goalless first half at Stade Louis II, they put their Swiss opponents to the sword once again.
New signing Ivan Cavaleiro opened the scoring with a fine, bending shot from a tight angle, before further goals followed from Layvin Kurzawa, Anthony Martial and another new signing, Stephan El Shaarawy, whose long-range finish was the highlight of the second leg tie.
Elsewhere, Dinamo Zagreb drew 3-3 at Molde on the night and 4-4 on aggregate, progressing to the playoffs on away goals, leaving their 10-man Norwegian opposition to rue two missed penalties in the first half.
APOEL lost 1-0 at home to FC Midtjylland in a tie that finished 2-2 on aggregate and saw the Cypriots go through to the play-offs on the strength of the two away goals they scored in the first leg.