Rapid Vienna stun Ajax 5-4 on aggregate to stay in contention for Champions League
The Hague, Aug 5 (IANS) Ajax crashed out of the third qualifying round of the Champions League after losing 2-3 at home to Rapid Wien, with the first match in Vienna last Wednesday having ended in a 2-2 draw. Last week in Austria, Ajax gave away a 2-0 lead at half-time and this time in Amsterdam it was the other way around on Tuesday, reports Xinhua.
After Ajax midfielder Daley Sinkgraven had lost the ball on his own half, Rapid profited and Robert Beric scored in the 12th minute. Louis Schaub doubled the score in the 39th minute when his shot was deflected in by Joel Veltman.
Just like Rapid did one week ago, Ajax bounced back from the 2-0 deficit in the second half. Arek Milik volleyed home a cross from Mitchell Dijks in the 52nd minute and fifteen minutes from time, it was substitute Nemanja Gudelj to make it 2-2.
Ajax could enjoy the hope for extra time or even a win for only two minutes because Schaub secured Rapid's place in the next round with a well-placed shot into the upper far corner of the Ajax goal.
Rapid will now play in the final play-off round of the Champions League while Ajax go on to play in the preliminary round of the Europa League. Since the 2010-11 season, Ajax had continuously participated in the group phase of the Champions League. Dutch champions PSV will this season be the only representative from the Netherlands.