Ajax Vs. Real Madrid, 2011 UEFA Champions League: Ajax Lose, Drop To Europa League

A combination of Real Madrid's B side and the officiating saw a spirited Ajax side downed 3-0 and improbably exit the UEFA Champions League at the group stages. Coming into the match, the home side were three points clear - and seven goals clear - of Lyon, who needed to make up an improbable number in goal differential to advance. It looked very much as though this game was irrelevant.

It wasn't. Within minutes of kickoff, Kaka had threaded a lovely through pass to Jose Callejon, who made no mistake in dispatching his shot past Kenneth Vermeer to make it 1-0. Despite going down, Ajax played well in the first half and carved out a number of opportunities including two goals which were bizarrely disallowed for offside. Gonzalo Higuain made it 2-0 shortly before halftime, but the hosts by no means deserved to be trailing.

It was a similar story in the second half, with Ajax playing well and simply unable to score. Meanwhile, Lyon were racking up a silly-looking win over Dinamo Zagreb, eventually dispatching their opponents 7-1 to more than make up the goal difference required to knock Ajax out. The Eredivisie side, apparently secure in their knowledge that everything was going to be fine, did little of note in the latter stages of the game, and it was all too easy for Callejon to get a second in stoppage time, consigning Ajax to the Europa League and capping off a crazy Champions League day.

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