Ajax Amsterdam 2 – AJ Auxerre 1


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Cameroon international defender EYONG ENOH (6) of Ajax Amsterdam is challenged by AJ Auxerre’s Congo international midfielder DELVIN NDINGA (29) along the sideline at the Amsterdam Arena in the Netherlands. (Paul Vreeker/Reuters)
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UEFA Champions League
Group Stage
10/19/2010

2 – Ajax Amsterdam (HOL) ——— De Zeeuw 7′, Suarez 41′
1 – AJ Auxerre (FRA) —————— Birsa 56′

After scoring twice in the first half, AJAX AMSTERDAM were forced to defend with ten men for most of the second but still hung on to defeat visiting French side AJ AUXERRE in Group G of the UEFA Champions League.

Holland World Cup reserve midfielder DEMY DE ZEEUW delighted the home supporters with a long range, rising blast to score his first goal of the season in any competition and give Ajax Amsterdam the early lead in just the seventh minute.

De Zeeuw dispossessed AJ Auxerre’s Congo international midfielder KELVIN NDINGA outside the penalty arc after visiting goalkeeper OLIVER SORIN had just saved with his legs from Ajax Amsterdam’s Sweden international midfielder RASMUS LINDGREN.

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Sweden international midfielder RASMUS LINDGREN (18) of Ajax Amsterdam, who was involved in the first goal for the home side, is knocked off the ball by AJ Auxerre’s goal-scorer and Slovenia World Cup midfielder VALTER BIRSA (9) at the Amsterdam Arena. (Paul Vreeker / Reuters)
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Ajax Amsterdam doubled its advantage just before the halftime whistle with a fast break down the right flank that ended when Morocco international striker MOUNIR EL HAMDAOUI slid a ball into space in the box for his attack partner, Uruguay World Cup striker LUIS SUAREZ, to run onto.

The Ajax captain Suarez cooly finished with a low shot to the far post in the 41st minute and registered his fourth goal in the UEFA Champions League this campaign.

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Uruguay World Cup striker and Ajax Amsterdam captain LUIS SUAREZ (16), who has now recorded 11 goals from 13 games in all competitions for de Godenzonen this season, is greeted by Morocco international striker MOUNIR EL HAMDAOUI (9) after scoring the second goal of the game at the Amsterdam Arena. (Paul Vreeker/Reuters)
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Not so long into the second half, the visitors got the break they were looking for when Kenya international winger DENNIS OLIECH was hauled down from behind just outside the penalty area by Holland World Cup defender ANDRE OOIJER in the 55th minute; since the 25-year-old AJ Auxerre player had a clear path to goal, the 36-year-old veteran Ajax Amsterdam defender was properly given his marching orders by match referee OLEGARIO BENQUERENCA.

Slovenia World Cup midfielder VALTER BIRSA, who scored his country’s first goal in their memorable 2-2 tie with the United States at Ellis Park Stadium in Johannesburg this summer, took the subsequent free kick for AJ Auxerre and curled the ball up over the wall and past Holland World Cup goalkeeper MAARTEN STEKELENBURG to bring the Burgundy side back into the match.

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Holland World Cup defender ANDRE OOIJER (13) of Ajax Amsterdam reacts after hauling down AJ Auxerre’s Kenya international winger DENNIS OLIECH (14) from behind just outside the box and will soon receive a straight red card from the referee for his efforts at the Amsterdam Arena. (Paul Vreeker/Reuters)
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AJ Auxerre, however, would not find an equalizer and fell for the third consecutive game at the Group Stage in the UEFA Champions League this term.

The Kenyan Oliech would be, himself, red-carded in the 85th minute for using his hand to punch a ball past Stekelenburg and into the net; in an unusual scene, unused AJ Auxerre substitute defender JEAN-PASCAL MIGNOT also earned a red card along the touchline in the 90th minute for mouthing off to the referee.

With the victory, Ajax Amsterdam pulled level with Italian Serie A side AC Milan for second place on four points in a Group of Death which also includes Spanish La Liga giant Real Madrid.

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A diving Holland World Cup goalkeeper MAARTEN STEKELENBURG (1) of Ajax Amsterdam crashes into AJ Auxerre striker ROY CONTOUT (16), who is sent flying as the ball sails wide of the net at the Amsterdam Arena. (Toussaint Kluiters/AFP/ANP)
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AJAX AMSTERDAM : Stekelenburg ; van der Wiel, Ooijer, Vertonghen, Enoh ; Emanuelson, de Zeeuw, Lindgren, Sulejmani (Oleguer 60′); El Hamdaoui, Suarez

AJ AUXERRE : Sorin ; Dudka, Coulibaly, Grichting, Hengbart ; Ndinga, Birsa, Chafni (Quercia 65′), Pedretti, Oliech ; Contout (Bourgeois 79′)

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With Spanish substitute defender OLEGUER (23) of Ajax Amsterdam looking on, Cameroon international defender EYONG ENOH (6) hooks the ball off the line and bails out Holland World Cup goalkeeper MAARTEN STEKELENBURG at the Amsterdam Arena. (Paul Vreeker/Reuters)
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Holland World Cup goalkeeper MAARTEN STEKELENBURG of Ajax Amsterdam has the ball directly in sight as AJ Auxerre’s Kenya international winger DENNIS OLIECH (14) hunts the rebound at the Amsterdam Arena. (Olaf Kraak/AFP/Getty Images)
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AJ Auxerre unused substitute defender JEAN-PASCAL MIGNOT is shown the red card for dissent in the 90th minute by Portuguese match referee OLEGARIO BENQUERENCA along the sideline at the Amsterdam Arena in the Netherlands. (Paul Vreeker/Reuters)
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