Recap

Ajax Ajax Amsterdam 3 – 1 FC Twente Twente

Sunday, March 15th 2011, 14.30 CET

What a game this was! And what a party afterwards 😀 Ajax deservingly won this game, and the championship (after not winning it since 2004, it was about time) as a whole. It’s been a fantastic run for Ajax this half season, ever since Frank de Boer took over. The club legend managed to turn around a wrecked, mid-season team into the rightful title holders. And he did this in style.

The game has been very enjoying, with lots of tension (much more for Twente fans) and superb goals. Many were afraid that, due to the stakes of this game, both in terms of prestige and prizes, the teams would be afraid to lose, thus they would maximize defense and leave goal opportunities to counter attacks. But there was no such thing: Twente started very confidently, and Bryan Ruiz was about to trick Ajax’s Vermeer in the very first minute of the game, but the Amsterdammers’ goalkeeper made a diving save.

Shortly afterwards, Ajax took control of the game, with precise passing in midfield and attacks on the flanks. Their first occasion came in the 19th minute, with Christian Eriksen sending the ball over the bar from Twente’s area. The continuous pressure from the Ajax forwards paid off 3 minutes later, when Siem de Jong received a cross from van der Wiel on the right and volleyed past Nikolay Mihaylov, making the crowd in Amsterdam Arena go wild. Twente then went more aggressive into Ajax’s side of the pitch, but they had no real occasions until half time.

The second half started in full gear, with two goals scored in the first 3 minutes! The first one came for Ajax: van der Wiel produced another great cross from the right, but Twente’s (and former Ajax’s) Denny Landzaat miscalculated and sent the ball past the goalkeeper with a diving header. It was a painful moment for Twente’s supporters, who now saw their team being lead 2-0 in their crucial game for the League title. Their hopes were lifted by Theo Janssen, easily Twente’s hero this season. Jansen’s goal came one minute after Landzaat’s own goal, and it came in style: from inside Ajax’s penalty area, Janssen curled the ball beautifully past Vermeer, finally giving his team’s supporters something to cheer for.

Twente’s hopes were to be shattered by the same Siem de Jong in the 78th minute. Ajax’s midfielder took advantage of a wonderful ball from Christian Eriksen which went through Twente’s defense, and then sent the ball past Mihaylov, who stood no chance. That was the moment when Ajax fans realized they could start celebrating, and for the next 10 minutes of the game the crowd was singing and preparing the aftermatch celebrations.

I was very please to see Ajax win the Eredivisie, and of course  to see my sports bets being correct 🙂 In total, the two soccer bets I made on this game brought me 6.76 units. If you recall from this post, my football prediction was for Ajax to win, and for the game to have more than 2.5 goals. Both football tips proved to be right 🙂 And this marks the end of this edition of Eredivisie. Lots to hope for in the next one, with both Ajax and Twente competing for the league title AND for the Champions League!

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