Ajax have narrowly managed to beat out their domestic rivals PSV on Sunday afternoon at the Johan Cruijff ArenA. A single goal scored by Quincy Promes on 35 minutes separated the two sides.
The first chance of the game fell to the home side when Carel Eiting played Quincy Promes clean through in the area but PSV goalkeeper Lars Unnerstall pulled off a terrific reflex save to deny the Ajax forward. The home side continued to have the better possession in an entertaining opening spell and Donny van de Beek forced a lunging save from Unnerstall on 20 minutes. Ajax looked the livelier of the two sides and Babel just failed to connect with a cross, while Tadic had an effort blocked.
The deadlock was finally broken in the 35th minute. Van de Beek won the ball in midfield, made a long run and turned provider for Promes who pulled the trigger: 1-0. Sam Lammers had the first shot on target for PSV in the 41st minute but Ajax goalkeeper Onana comfortably saved his effort, while at the other end Unnerstall dived full length to turn Sergiño Dest’s shot away. Promes limped off the pitch with a suspected hamstring injury and Lassina Traoré came off the bench to replace him. HT: 1-0.
After Ajax were forced to make their third and final substitution, PSV gradually sent men forward in search of an equaliser. Sergiño Dest went down after a challenge from Olivier Boscagli but referee Björn Kuipers waved play on. New signing Ricardo Rodrigues came on for Olivier Boscagli in the 70th minute. The introduction of 17-year-old Noni Madueke or Bruma with nine minutes remaining gave PSV fresh impetus. The 17-year-old came close on two occasions but Ernest Faber’s men could not find a late equaliser to avoid defeat.
PSV will return to Eredivisie action on Saturday 8 February when they host Willem II in the Philips Stadion (19.45). Ajax plays against FC Utrecht on Sunday (12.15)