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Ajax 0 – 1 Chelsea: Late Batshuayi strike gives Chelsea hard-fought Ajax win



Frank Lampard produced his most impressive win since taking over at Chelsea as Michy Batshuayi came off the bench to down Ajax in Amsterdam.

Chelsea looked to have fallen behind in the first half when Quincy Promes slid in at the back-post, only for the Video Assistant Referee to adjudge the Dutchman was offside when the ball was played.

The visitors rallied and on came Batshuayi and Christian Pulisic. It was those two who produced the moment of magic for Lampard four minutes from time as the American picked out his team-mate and the Belgian striker fired a strike high into the roof of the net.

The Blues gave a strong account of themselves against last season’s semi finalists and snatched the points when substitute Michy Batshuayi made up for a glaring miss with a sharp strike four minutes from time.

Eric ten Hag’s Ajax side had thought they had opened the scoring on 35 minutes, but Quincy Promes’s close-range strike was ruled out by VAR for offside.

The hosts then hit the post through Edson Alvarez in the second half before Frank Lampard’s men began to grow as the more threatening force.

The result sees Chelsea join Ajax at the top of the pool on six points ahead of Valencia’s clash with Lille.

The Blues will now look to further bolster their hopes of reaching the knockout stage when they host the Dutch giants on Matchday 4 on November 5.

Chelsea shade battle of the young guns to give Lampard a significant win. Much was made of how these two sides have burgeoning young talent ahead of the contest, and Chelsea did enough to live up to the recent hype against a club rich in the tradition of developing starlets for their first team.

 Callum Hudson-Odoi was lively on his first start in the competition, particularly in the first half. He combined well with Mason Mount and Tammy Abraham without making the most of some good situations.

 Fikayo Tomori was once again impressive in defence, while substitutes Christian Pulisic and Batshuayi made a massive contribution in securing a win that must surely go down as Lampard’s biggest in charge so far. It is a potentially coming-of-age success at the expense of an opponent who had not lost since May 8.

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