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Ajax boss Erik Ten Hag was full of confidence ahead of Chelsea’s game with Ajax at the Johan Cruyff ArenA, and the Ajax manager was so sure that his side were going to carry the day.
Erik ten Hag’s side are group favourites having narrowly missed out on the Champions League final last season following a last-minute goal from Tottenham in the semi-finals, and his confidence ahead of the Chelsea clash was overwhelming. Ajax had won their opening two games and he was expecting yet another massive victory for the Dutch champions.
The Ajax boss told Kicker before the game: “We have self-confidence and developed a playing style with which can cause problems for any opponent.
“We aren’t afraid of any team and can beat Chelsea. But for that we need on Wednesday is a top performance.”
However, Chelsea matched Ajax on their home ground and the Blues just about edged the game as Frank Lampard made some decisive changes with the introduction of Christian Pulisic and Michy Batshuayi, and it was the latter who scored the winner late in the game.
Speaking after the game, Ten Hag who was boasting for a win was now claiming that his side deserved to draw the game.
“It was an equal match in which we were the closest to a goal for a long time,” he said in quotes reported by ad.nl.
“Top matches are decided on details and we didn’t look good at that goal. I sometimes found our play was sloppy. The disappointment is huge. We were equal.”
Ajax’s Quincy Promes had a goal ruled out for the narrowest of offside calls, but Hag refused to be critical of Promes’ tight VAR call, adding: “It is ultimately up to the video referee.”