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Chelsea and Valencia qualified for the second round of the Champions League, while last season’s semi-finalists Ajax were dumped in the group stage and relegated to the Europa League after finishing the group in third.
Chelsea and Ajax played out an 8-goal thriller at Stamford Bridge, and that game aided Chelsea’s cause to qualify from the group.
Chelsea went 4-1 down and came back into the Ajax game with three second-half goals in what was a stunning Chelsea comeback.
Daley Blind and Joel Veltman got sent off while Ajax were 4-2 up, and according to the latest report, published in De Telegraaf, a UEFA referee winter meeting decided that the ‘blunders’ made by Gianluca Rocchi ‘killed’ Ajax in that game back in November.
The meeting decided that the ref should have blown his whistle after Blind’s tackle, preventing the future penalty and that VAR should have prevented Veltman’s expulsion as well.
Ajax director of football Edwin van der Sar isn’t keen for the club to take legal action against UEFA over the refereeing, and calls it “hopeless and pointless”.
After the game, Ajax forward Dusan Tadic accused the Italian of “destroying” the game, after sending off both Daley Blind and Joel Veltman.
“We were the best team on the pitch and we’re disappointed because we should be talking about Ajax and our beautiful game, but we can’t because a guy [Rocchi] stole everything from us,” Tadic claimed.
“I don’t like to look for excuses or talk about other people, but we should be talking about how superior we were to Chelsea and we can’t because someone destroyed everything. It can’t be that someone destroys a game in this way.”