Thursday February 23, 2012 Last 32 Finished Old Trafford

Manchester United 1 - 2 Ajax

  • Hernández 6’
  • Özbiliz 37’
  • Alderweireld 87’

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  1. United survive Ajax fightback to advance

    United survive Ajax fightback to advance

    Despite Ajax winning 2-1 at Old Trafford, Manchester United advanced to the Europa League last 16 with a 3-2 aggregate victory. More

  • Live Commentary

    Time:90'
    • Manchester United
    • Ajax
    • 90+2' United let slip possession from a simple throw-in and Ajax have one last chance to get the ball forward... no, they don't! That's at Old Trafford. United survive a scare to advance. Thanks for joining me tonight, follow me on Twitter @liamhappe
    • 90+1' Another long ball into the United danger zone sails out of play.
    • 90' Ozbiliz sends the ball into the box. Well, past the box. It's overhit and out for a goal kick. We will have two minutes of time added on at the end. Insert your own Sir Alex stopwatch joke.
    • 89' Nani looks in discomfort after hunting down a loose ball on the left wing. Evans has been booked for time wasting, meanwhile.
    • 88' Close range header from the centre-back means one goal in the closing stages will dump United out!
    • 87' The ball is whipped into the goalmouth... and ALDERWEIRELD SCORES!
    • 86' Klaasen sets Ozbiliz free on the right-hand side of the box but his attempt to pull back for a sight of goal sees him lose possession. Now Scholes gives away a central free-kick, about 30 yards out.
    • 85' Nani almost heads Klaasen in on goal, but the United defence recover the situation. Now Ajax have a free-kick on the right wing, which Ozbiliz whips in only to see headed away.
    • 84' Hernandez's cross is headed away, before Welbeck's attempt to through-pass Park into a goalscoring position is cut out.
    • 83' Park and Welbeck fail to work a move out on the right and Ajax have a throw.
    • 81' United continue to contain Ajax, and seem happy to let them keep the ball as long as they want in the middle of the park where they pose no threat to the aggregate score.
    • 80' Now, finally, Blind comes on for Lodeiro. That's Ajax's final sub, and the last of the game.
    • 79' Park's hold-up play is good, but he's outnumbered off the ball.
    • 78' Daley Blind is ready to come on for Ajax, but he'll have to wait.
    • 77' Jones is clipped by van Rhijn near the halfway line for a free-kick.
    • 76' Sulejmani's cross from the left is headed away by Evans.
    • 75' Lodeiro and Klaasen waste a chance to capitalise on some poor defending and United break once more. Superb pace down the left from Welbeck but his square pass attempt is put out for a corner, which Vermeer claims.
    • 73' Indeed, they give possession away and United break with Nani cutting inside the HITTING THE BAR! Great 20-yard effort!
    • 72' Ajax just getting looser with their passes. Wondering if their chance to find a way back into this has passed them by now.
    • 71' The sub will now be made, with Berbatov replaced by Danny Welbeck.
    • 70' But now the away side are starting to hold onto the ball again, albeit unable to get into the United final third.
    • 69' And now their third and final sub is being prepped, it would seem.
    • 68' That double change from Sir Alex is slowly working: United are gradually taking the pace of the game back and moving the ball more often into the Ajax half.
    • 66' Sulejmani is unable to keep a raking cross-field pass to the left flank on, and United have a goal kick.
    • 65' Scholes fouls Anita in the middle of the park.
    • 63' United actually made a double change - the other being Young making way for Jonny Evans.
    • 62' Cynical challenge on Jones by de Jong, which earns him a yellow.
    • 61' 21-year-old South African Thulani Serero replaces Eriksen, while Cleverley makes way for Scholes for the home team. One change each.
    • 60' Great control and turn from Ozbiliz, but he can't find a way past the back line.
    • 59' Now the hosts attack and Fabio embarks on a mazy run before being stopped by the third man.
    • 58' DE JONG! Header from the corner met by a superb reflex save! Another corner coming up. From the set piece, Vertonghen tries an ill-advised overhead kick and misses the target by a mile.
    • 57' Paul Scholes getting ready for United. Looks like both sides will make changes. Ajax win another corner as the hosts are hanging on somewhat!
    • 56' Eriksen squares to Sulejmani, who leans back and fires over.
    • 55' Ajax enjoying another nice spell of pressure here, and their fans responding in kind with plenty of noise.
    • 54' And now Ajax win a corner, from which Sulejmani cuts inside and sees a shot blocked by the right-back.
    • 53' Lodeiro's through pass down the left-hand side of the box leads to a Sulejmani cross being cut out by Rafael.
    • 52' Berbatov is played in by Nani, but the striker was offside.
    • 51' Nani gives away a free-kick inside the Ajax half now.
    • 50' Nani's cross from the right fails to get beyond the near post.
    • 49' Ozbiliz loses out to Fabio on the right-hand flank and fouls the defender trying to prevent him getting to the loose ball first.
    • 48' Sulejmani bombs down the left and his low cross searches for Eriksen, only for Fabio to juuuust about intercept despite almost losing his footing beforehand.
    • 47' Koppers has been withdrawn at half-time, by the way. On is Davy Klaassen.
    • 46' Ajax get the second half underway.
    • 45+2' Half-time. All square but Ajax need two more if they're to advance. Throw me your predictions on Twitter! Follow @liamhappe
    • 45+1' Despite the stoppage for treatment to Koppers, only one minute of added time will be played. And speaking of the full-back, he promptly takes a cleared ball right into the face!
    • 45' Fabio's floated cross misses his team-mates in the area.
    • 44' Nani moves the ball down the left, but settles for winning an attacking throw.
    • 42' Cleverley from 25 yards! Parried by Vermeer, and just behind Hernandez who awaited the rebound!
    • 41' It's headed away, and by the time it comes back in, Hernandez is offside.
    • 40' United now have a free-kick deep on the right channel, which Young will take once the ref is finally happy with the exact position of the ball.
    • 39' This is the second time Ajax have put in a strong showing on their way out of a European competition, assuming they are unable to mount a big comeback here tonight. Their performance against Real Madrid at the Bernabeu was a good one, and they were unlucky to be sent out after a pair of seemingly legit goals were ruled offside.
    • 38' A deserved equaliser based on the nature of play, though United had chances to double their lead of course.
    • 37' AJAX LEVEL ON THE NIGHT! Ozbiliz buries a loose ball into the far bottom corner!
    • 36' Delay on the free-kick as Koppers receives treatment off the pitch. Ozbiliz almost gets onto the cross but it's nodded across the face of goal by a United defender and the visitors have an attacking throw on the opposite side.
    • 35' Koppers is fouled as he whips in a cross on the left wing. Cleverley the guilty party.
    • 33' Young's corner goes straight into the grasp of Vermeer. The ref had a word with Hernandez and Alderweireld for handbags before that.
    • 32' Now Nani threads Berbatov through on the left-hand side of the box... but his square pass is behind Hernandez! Now United have a corner.
    • 31' Neat one-two between Berbatov and Cleverley before the Bulgarian's cut-back attempt is cleared away.
    • 30' Uh-oh: the travelling fans now signing "there's only one Luis Suarez" - Suarez of course spent several years at the Amsterdam ArenA before moving to Liverpool.
    • 29' Hernandez's pleas of a push as he looks to close down a back pass are ignored by the ref.
    • 28' Ajax almost counter from a United attack until Rafael slides in late on Lodeiro and earns the first yellow of the match.
    • 27' Now a ball in from the right is pushed away by De Gea's one-handed stretch.
    • 26' Lodeiro's driven cross from the left is cleared by Smalling.
    • 25' Berbatov's cross from the left takes a deflection and Vermeer makes the catch.
    • 23' Great twisting and turning from Ozbiliz as he moves into the box from the left, but De Gea catches his angled shot.
    • 22' De Jong is next to miss the goal for Ajax. Goal kick.
    • 20' Eriksen appears to have shaken off a bump he took in the build towards Sulejmani's off-target shot earlier.
    • 19' Rafael cuts inside but shoots tamely straight at Vermeer from just outside the box.
    • 17' De Jong preys on complacency to spring forward. Inside to Eriksen who takes a heavy touch before Sulejmani picks up the loose ball and fires over the bar.
    • 16' United concede a free-kick as the corner comes in to end the spell of pressure.
    • 15' United have space to attack now and Hernandez tries to square for Berbatov inside the box but Vertonghen slides in to concede a corner of his own.
    • 14' Smalling beats Vertonghen to the delivery from Ozbiliz at the expense of another corner. The Turkish-Armenian's second corner is overhit and out for a goal kick.
    • 13' Eriksen has a shot deflected behind for another Ajax corner.
    • 12' Athletic Bilbao await the winners of this one after beating Lokomotiv Moscow on away goals with a 1-0 home win earlier today.
    • 10' It was Koppers on Rafael and the right-back is lucky not to get a card for diving.
    • 9' United claim a penalty... nothing given though.
    • 7' Ajax break forward from the restart but cause no trouble for De Gea.
    • 6' But here's Hernandez! It's 1-0 on the night and mission impossible for the Dutch side now!
    • 4' Almost an excellent slide rule pass by Berbatov in towards Hernandez, but Vertonghen puts his body on the line to get there first and the two come together quite nastily. Ajax get the free-kick, as their man was on the ball first.
    • 3' Now Ajax get forward and win the game's first corner. It's a decent delivery, but headed away from goal. Now Hernandez concedes a second as Eriksen looks for an early cross from the left.
    • 2' Park! Parried by Vermeer!
    • 1' And the home side get the game started.
    • 20:00 Ajax come into the game on the back of a 4-1 win over NEC. They are currently only sixth in the Dutch League though. Dutch Eredivisie
    • 19:55 Tonight's referee is Damir Skomina of Slovenia who is a current member of the UEFA elite list.
    • 19:50 United won 2-0 in their only previous match at home to Ajax, in the 1976-77 UEFA Cup.
    • 19:45 No Dutch side has ever avoided defeat at Old Trafford in European competition, with five defeats.
    • 19:40 United have lost just one of their last 35 matches at home in European competition (0-1 vs Besiktas in Nov 2009).
    • 19:35 Last week, ahead of the first leg between the two sides, Euroscout took a closer look at Christian Eriksen. Can the Danish wonderkid help his side stage an unlikely comeback in the tie? Here's that piece again -
    • 19:30 Ajax coach Frank de Boer: "Basel managed to draw with United and we are trying to do something similar here as them - get a result. We are not here just to see the scenery and we will see after the game what the result is."
    • 19:25 Man Utd manager Sir Alex Ferguson: "The experience we had against Basel, where we were 2-0 up at half-time, that's in our memories. I don't think we'll be casual or careless about what we're trying to achieve tomorrow but it's a good lead. You can't dispute that."
    • 19:20 TEAMS - Man Utd: De Gea, Rafael Da Silva, Jones, Smalling, Fabio Da Silva, Nani, Park, Cleverley, Young, Hernandez, Berbatov. Subs: Amos, Evra, Evans, Giggs, Carrick, Welbeck, Scholes. /// Ajax: Vermeer, Van Rhijn, Alderweireld, Vertonghen, Koppers, De Jong, Anita, Eriksen, Ozbiliz, Lodeiro, Sulejmani. Subs: Cillessen, Ebecilio, Ooijer, Blind, Serero, Aissati, Klaassen.
    • 19:15 Good evening and welcome to our LIVE text commentary for the Europa League last-32 second-leg tie between Manchester United and Ajax!
  • Summary

    • 87' The ball is whipped into the goalmouth... and ALDERWEIRELD SCORES!
    • 73' Indeed, they give possession away and United break with Nani cutting inside the HITTING THE BAR! Great 20-yard effort!
    • 58' DE JONG! Header from the corner met by a superb reflex save! Another corner coming up. From the set piece, Vertonghen tries an ill-advised overhead kick and misses the target by a mile.
    • 42' Cleverley from 25 yards! Parried by Vermeer, and just behind Hernandez who awaited the rebound!
    • 37' AJAX LEVEL ON THE NIGHT! Ozbiliz buries a loose ball into the far bottom corner!
    • 32' Now Nani threads Berbatov through on the left-hand side of the box... but his square pass is behind Hernandez! Now United have a corner.
    • 15' United have space to attack now and Hernandez tries to square for Berbatov inside the box but Vertonghen slides in to concede a corner of his own.
    • 6' But here's Hernandez! It's 1-0 on the night and mission impossible for the Dutch side now!
    • 2' Park! Parried by Vermeer!
    • 19:20 TEAMS - Man Utd: De Gea, Rafael Da Silva, Jones, Smalling, Fabio Da Silva, Nani, Park, Cleverley, Young, Hernandez, Berbatov. Subs: Amos, Evra, Evans, Giggs, Carrick, Welbeck, Scholes. /// Ajax: Vermeer, Van Rhijn, Alderweireld, Vertonghen, Koppers, De Jong, Anita, Eriksen, Ozbiliz, Lodeiro, Sulejmani. Subs: Cillessen, Ebecilio, Ooijer, Blind, Serero, Aissati, Klaassen.

Team Line-up & Ratings

  • Line-up

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