Ajax’s chances of lifting the Eredivisie trophy are all but over after a 3-2 loss away to Vitesse Arnhem. 

With PSV winning on Saturday, Ajax needed a win in Arnhem to move back to within seven points of the leaders. Erik ten Hag was without Frenkie de Jong and Klaas-Jan Huntelaar, so Siem de Jong and Max Wober started.

Ajax dominated the opening ten minutes with De Jong missing an excellent chance early on before David Neres couldn’t thread through an open Donny van de Beek.

On 15 minutes, a lack of concentration by Joel Veltman gifted Vitesse a corner which found its way to Navarone Foor outside the box and the midfielder took two touches before hammering the ball into the top corner to make it 1-0.

Lasse Schone fired a free-kick wide while Matthijs de Ligt was off target with a header as Ajax looked for an equaliser but Vitesse remained dangerous at the other end. Bryan Linssen dragged a shot wide via a deflection and Matt Miazga had a header cleared off the line by Hakim Ziyech. Just before the break the ball fell kindly for Tim Matavz outside the box but the strikers shot was too weak to trouble Andre Onana.

Ten minutes into the second half it was 2-0 as Wober miscontrolled a pass by De Ligt allowing Linssen in on goal and the winger comfortably beat Onana.

Ten Hag then made a double situation with Kluivert and Wober replaced by Amin Younes and Mateo Cassierra. Moments later, Cassierra made an instant impact, heading in a corner to make it 2-1.

Ajax rallied after the goal and Younes hit the post before Cassierra came within inches of getting his second. However, with twenty minutes left Vitesse made it 3-1 with Guram Kashia heading a free-kick into the path of Linssen who netted his second.

Remko Pasveer denied Neres and Cassierra on two occasions but with five minutes left he was beaten by De Jong who prodded into the net after Younes headed across goal.

There was to be no leveller though as Vitesse held on for the win which lifts them above PEC Zwolle into sixth. For Ajax, they now sit ten points off PSV and can realistically say goodbye to their title hopes.

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