News Matches

Ajax v Napoli Live Commentary, 04/10/2022

FT
1 - 6
AJX
NAP
M. Kudus (9)
G. Raspadori (18)
G. Di Lorenzo (33)
P. Zieliński (45)
G. Raspadori (47)
K. Kvaratskhelia (63)
G. Simeone (81)
Johan Cruijff Arena

Commentary

It's a huge win for Napoli, then, who are cruising towards the Champions League last 16. No one will want to draw them at the moment. That's all for now. Goodbye!
Napoli's third consecutive Champions League victory keeps them top of Group A, three points clear of Liverpool who've beaten Rangers 2-0. The Italians attempted 26 shots in this game and will trouble the best teams in this competition. Ajax stay third, their goal difference and self-esteem dented.
Napoli have made a statement here, putting six goals past Ajax in Amsterdam! Spalletti's men were relentless from start to finish, coming from behind to go 3-1 up by half-time. The Dutch champions crumbled in the second half, conceding three more goals, with Tadic's red card adding insult to injury.
90' + 2' FULL-TIME: AJAX 1-6 NAPOLI
M. Kudus
Yellow Card
Ajax
90' + 1' Kudus lands his name in the book for an unnecessary challenge on Ndombele. And that's it!
90' Lozano swings the corner into the box. Simeone heads off-target. Ajax have at least one more minute of this mauling to endure.
89' Ndombele hits the crossbar! The Frenchman sweeps the ball up against the woodwork via the hand of Pasveer from Zanoli's cross. It bounces back into play and Ajax clear, but not for long, as Zanoli earns the visitors another corner.
88' Lozano, who's unlucky not to be on the scoresheet for Napoli himself, fires against an Ajax defender in the box.
86' Napoli may be five goals up, but they're still showing Ajax no mercy. Elmas' shot from outside the box is blocked.
Y. Baas
D. Rensch
Ajax
84' Rensch's game for Ajax is over. Baas comes on for a thankless last few minutes.
A. Zanoli
G. Di Lorenzo
Napoli
84' Di Lorenzo walks off to get the applause from his supporters. Zanoli trots onto the pitch for Napoli.
83' Napoli have scored three goals in the last 15 minutes of games in the Champions League this season, more than any other team. They're an irresistable attacking force at the moment.
T. Ndombélé
Assist
Napoli
81' That was a wonderful combination by the two substitutes Ndombele and Simeone. Napoli are brimming with confidence.
G. Simeone
Goal
Napoli
81' GOAL! AJAX 1-6 NAPOLI! This has become an astonishing rout! Ndombele finds Simeone with a sumptuous first-time flick and the substitute fires high into the centre of the net. Ajax have given up.
F. Grillitsch
J. Timber
Ajax
80' Now it's Ajax's turn to make a change. Timber heads for the bench. Grillitsch comes on.
G. Gaetano
S. Lobotka
Napoli
80' Napoli substitution. Lobotka heads off. Gaetano gets a late runout.
79' Lozano beats his man for pace and takes aim for the far bottom corner from the edge of the box. The ball bobbles wide of the left-hand post.
78' Simeone reaches the byline and cuts back for Di Lorenzo, who hooks a tame shot into Pasveer's arms.
77' Napoli are toying with Ajax now, wisely looking to tire their 10 men out. The away fans are cheering every touch.
75' Elmas will take Napoli's free-kick, which is in a central position not too far from goal. The North Macedonian sweeps it wide of the left-hand post.
73' RED CARD FOR TADIC! The Ajax captain picks up his second yellow card for using his arm to muscle over Olivera. Things are going from bad to worse for the hosts!
D. Klaassen
K. Taylor
Ajax
72' Taylor's the next Ajax player to make way. Klaassen is his replacement.
B. Brobbey
S. Berghuis
Ajax
72' Ajax make a few substitutions. Berghuis heads off. Brobbey comes on.
71' Simeone gets a shot off from the centre of the box. Pasveer gets down low to save it easily.
69' Napoli cleverly send the corner deep, finding Rrahmani near the penalty spot. The Kosovan hooks the ball straight at goal, and Pasveer makes a smart save with his feet to keep it out!
68' Anguissa fires at goal from the right of the box. It's blocked, and Napoli have another corner.
66' Bergwijn goes up against Meret but gets flagged offside.
E. Elmas
K. Kvaratskhelia
Napoli
64' Kvaratskhelia makes way too after an influential hour or so for Napoli. Elmas is his replacement.
G. Simeone
G. Raspadori
Napoli
64' Raspadori's assist is his last act of the match. He'll be content with his two goals. Simeone comes on for Napoli.
G. Raspadori
Assist
Napoli
63' Raspadori knew what Kvaratskhelia had planned and didn't have to work hard to find him. This is starting to become humiliating for Ajax.
K. Kvaratskhelia
Goal
Napoli
63' GOAL! AJAX 1-5 NAPOLI! This is a five-star performance from Napoli! Kvaratskhelia gets his name on the scoresheet, playing a one-two with Raspadori to bustle into the box and finish right-footed past Pasveer. A few Ajax fans are making for the exits.
61' Napoli manage to get the ball away this time. The visitors understandably don't look too flustered yet, even though Ajax are putting them under slightly more pressure.
60' Tadic leaps to get on the end of a cross but Olivera does enough to put the winger off. Ajax get a corner, and Berghuis' near-post delivery is cleared for another. This time, he aims for the far post and Rrahmani blocks Alvarez's header. It's a third Ajax corner.
58' Kvaratskhelia is thankfully back on his feet. Alvarez plays the ball against Ndombele to earn Ajax a throw-in.
57' Berghuis lashes a left-footed drive into the side netting. Napoli are unhappy as Tadic's turn in the build-up took him into Kvaratskhelia, leaving the Georgian down injured.
56' Lozano dribbles through the middle of the pitch and gets brought down. No free-kick's given.
54' Ajax manage to win a corner down their left. Nothing comes of it, but it's something for the hosts.
53' Raspadori darts into the left of the box but doesn't have a clear sight of goal. He elects to pass back towards Anguissa, who's intercepted.
51' Tadic curtails Olivera's run to hand Napoli yet another free-kick.
49' It's been half an hour since Ajax last attempted a shot. Napoli are humbling them on their home patch.
A. Zambo Anguissa
Assist
Napoli
48' Pasveer handed Anguissa the ball on a plate there, and he served it to Raspadori for him to gobble up. Ajax's hopes of a second-half comeback look over already.
G. Raspadori
Goal
Napoli
47' GOAL! AJAX 1-4 NAPOLI! What a horrible goal for Ajax to concede! Pasveer plays a lax pass straight to Anguissa. The Cameroonian moves it on immediately to Raspadori, who slots past the despairing goalkeeper for his second goal of the game.
46' Ajax get the second half started. They've resisted making any changes for now.
T. Ndombélé
P. Zieliński
Napoli
46' Napoli make a half-time substitution. Ndombele replaces Zielinski, who must have taken a knock.
Napoli had 13 shots in that first half, 10 of them in Ajax's box. They've troubled their hosts time and again. The Dutch champions will need to be exceptional in the second half to salvage a positive result from here.
Napoli go in at the break two goals to the good and in a commanding position. Spalletti's men may have gone behind to an early Kudus goal, but they've been well on top since then. Ajax haven't been able to cope with the visitors' pace and intensity.
45' + 2' HALF-TIME: AJAX 1-3 NAPOLI
A. Zambo Anguissa
Assist
Napoli
45' Anguissa wasted no time in finding Zielinski, taking Ajax's entire defence out of the equation in the process. This has been a fantastic first half for Napoli.
P. Zieliński
Goal
Napoli
45' GOAL! AJAX 1-3 NAPOLI! Ajax get caught upfield and pay the price for it! Anguissa's throughball sends Zielinski scampering through on goal. The Polish international fires powerfully past Pasveer, who gets a hand to the shot but can't keep it out.
44' Ajax haven't had a shot for over 20 minutes. Napoli have had eight in that time.
42' Blind's hopeful throughball for Kudus is unsuccessful as the striker's offside. Bergwijn tugs down Lobotka in Napoli's half and is frustrated to hand the Italians another free-kick.
41' Napoli nearly go 3-1 up! Lozano gallops into tons of space and crosses for Zielinski, who ghosts into the box to blast at goal first-time. Pasveer pushes the shot out to Anguissa, who blazes over on the volley.
39' Napoli deliberate over the free-kick, attracting the ire of the home fans. Ajax are certainly rattled at the moment.
D. Tadić
Yellow Card
Ajax
38' The referee shows Tadic a yellow card for his tackle on Olivera.
37' Tadic's crunching tackle leaves Olivera in a crumpled heap on the turf. The Ajax captain might see a card here.
35' Bergwijn impedes Di Lorenzo, handing Napoli another free-kick. Ajax may have gone ahead early on, but they're firmly on the back foot now.
K. Kvaratskhelia
Assist
Napoli
33' Kvaratskhelia has been vibrant for Napoli in the first half hour of this match, and his delivery for Di Lorenzo there was great. The Italians deserve to be ahead.
G. Di Lorenzo
Goal
Napoli
33' GOAL! AJAX 1-2 NAPOLI! Di Lorenzo doesn't miss with his header this time, nodding Kvaratskhelia's cross into the top-left corner of the net! Napoli have come from behind to lead!
32' Kvaratskhelia skips into the centre of the box and scuffs a shot against Timber, earning Napoli a corner down their right. Zielinski fires it in, and Di Lorenzo's header deflects out for a second Napoli corner.
J. Timber
Yellow Card
Ajax
30' Timber unfairly stops Zielinski's run and is shown the yellow card for doing so.
28' Napoli continue to try to force the issue. Di Lorenzo looks for Lozano, who's offside.
27' Chance for Napoli! Lozano's cross from the right lands to Kvaratskhelia in the centre of the box. Pasveer makes a vital block to stop the Georgian from converting! Ajax hurriedly clear.
26' Napoli keep possession for a while, staying on the prowl outside Ajax's box. Kvaratskhelia's pop at goal from range is an easy save for Pasveer.
24' Lozano receives a pass from Raspadori and shoots from outside the box. He's closed down quickly.
22' Kudus is caught offside as he attempts to reach Taylor's throughball.
G. Raspadori
Yellow Card
Napoli
21' Raspadori's shown the game's first yellow card for a poor challenge on Bassey.
20' Ajax get right back to attacking Napoli's goal. Meret comfortably saves Taylor's hopeful shot from outside the box before Bergwijn has an effort blocked. This is end-to-end stuff at the moment.
M. Olivera
Assist
Napoli
19' Ajax should have closed Olivera down far more quickly there, but they didn't and have been punished. This game has gotten off to a ding-dong start!
G. Raspadori
Goal
Napoli
18' GOAL! AJAX 1-1 NAPOLI! Napoli equalise! Olivera has the time to pick out Raspadori with a cross towards the far post. The winger guides his header from the right of the six-yard box back across goal into the bottom-left corner!
16' Kvaratskhelia is whiskers away from scoring with a right-footed curler from outside the box. Napoli aren't feeling sorry for themselves, that's for sure.
15' Lobotka earns Napoli a free-kick down their right. Zielinski crosses in, but Olivera can't keep his header down.
13' Napoli win a series of free-kicks in their own half as Ajax bring their attacks to a halt. The visitors aren't keen to be behind for long.
11' With that goal, 22-year-old Kudus has become the youngest Ajax player to score in three consecutive appearances in the Champions League since the 19-year-old Patrick Kluivert in October 1995. That's some company to keep.
K. Taylor
Assist
Ajax
10' There's no way Taylor meant that assist, but Kudus certainly made the most of it! Ajax are off to a great start!
M. Kudus
Goal
Ajax
9' GOAL! AJAX 1-0 NAPOLI! Bergwijn plays a one-two with Taylor to burst into the box and cut the ball back for his team-mate. Taylor's shot is blocked and lands for Kudus, who manages to bundle home from very close range!
7' Napoli earn a throw-in in Ajax's defensive third but Di Lorenzo makes a minor hash of it. The hosts accept a goal-kick to ironic cheers from the home fans.
5' Bergwijn holds the ball up on the edge of the box and lays off for the arriving Alvarez. The Mexican fires high and wide from distance.
3' Both teams are looking to start the match with high intensity. Raspadori wins a free-kick down the left as he's stopped by Timber. The Sassuolo loanee soon shoots wide from the centre of the box.
1' After a minute's silence out of respect for the victims of last week's Indonesian stadium disaster, Napoli get this game underway.
Ajax and Napoli have only met once before in Europe in the Inter-Cities Fairs Cup in 1969-70. Ajax won 4-1 on aggregate. The Italians have never won away from home in the Netherlands, while Ajax have won none of their last 11 home European matches against Italian opposition, dating back to 2002. One of those records may well end here.
There are two changes to Napoli from their 3-1 victory over Torino in Serie A last weekend. Olivera and Lozano are the incomers. Mario Rui and Politano drop to the bench.
Ajax boss Alfred Schreuder makes four changes to his team from their last match, a 1-1 draw with Go Ahead Eagles. In come Alvarez, Berghuis, Bergwijn and Kudus, who has scored in each of his two previous Champions League appearances this season for the club.
SUBS: Eljif Elmas, Gianluca Gaetano, Matteo Politano, Leo Ostigard, Salvatore Sirigu, Giovanni Simeone, Juan Jesus, Tanguy Ndombele, Hubert Dawid Idasiak, Mario Rui, Alessio Zerbin, Alessandro Zanoli.
NAPOLI (4-3-3): Alex Meret; Giovanni Di Lorenzo (c), Kim Min-Jae, Amir Rrahmani, Mathias Olivera; Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa, Stanislav Lobotka, Piotr Zielinski; Hirving Lozano, Giacomo Raspadori, Khvicha Kvaratskhelia.
SUBS: Davy Klaassen, Youri Baas, Lucas Ocampos, Florian Grillitsch, Owen Wijndal, Brian Brobbey, Maarten Stekelenburg, Francisco Conceicao, Lorenzo Lucca, Lisandro Magallan, Jay Gorter, Youri Regeer.
AJAX (4-2-3-1): Remko Pasveer; Devyne Rensch, Jurrien Timber, Calvin Bassey, Daley Blind; Edson Alvarez, Kenneth Taylor; Dusan Tadic (c), Steven Berghuis, Steven Bergwijn; Mohammed Kudus.
Ajax's opponents are current group leaders Napoli, who have opened their Champions League campaign with two straight victories. Luciano Spalletti's side are the top-scoring team in the competition so far this season and arrive in Amsterdam full of confidence having won all of their last six matches.
Ajax return to Champions League action on the back of a three-game winless run which started with their narrow 2-1 defeat away to Liverpool last month. The Dutch champions are looking for a fifth consecutive home win in the Champions League group stage to bolster their chances of making it through to the last 16.
Hello! Welcome to our live text commentary of this UEFA Champions League Group A match between Ajax and Napoli at Johan Cruijff Arena.