Ajax began their Europa League campaign with a 2-1 win over 9-man Panathinaikos in Greece.

traore-aja-panPeter Bosz decided to name the exact same side that struggled to a 1-0 win over Vitesse at the weekend, with Bertrand Traore recovering from injury to lead the line in Greece.

Striker Marcus Berg scored against Netherlands last week and the Swede took only five minutes to net against another Dutch side. A poor clearance from Onana was seized on by Panathinaikos and Berg finished off a pass from Robin Lod. The hosts continued to pressurise the Ajax backline but after 34 minutes Bertrand Traore fired in at the back post to net a equaliser. The Amsterdam side then controlled the rest of the first half and Davison Sanchez had a glorious opportunity to make it 2-1 before the break but he was denied at point blank range by Luke Steele.

Ajax were dominant in the second half and in the 66th minute they were awarded a penalty for a foul on Mitchell Dijks. Davy Klaassen saw his spot kick saved by Steele but Jairo Riedewald followed up to slot in the rebound.

A red card for Ivanov should have made the rest of the game comfortable for Ajax but Hakim Ziyech also saw red for his second yellow card to give the home side hope of a comeback. A good save from Onana denied Berg an equaliser late on and just before the end Wakaso Mubarak became the third recipient of a red card for a headbutt to kill off Panathinaikos’s chances as Ajax held on through six minutes of added time.




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