Ajax v Valencia facts

Ajax and Valencia are vying to progress from Group H, although it is the Dutch side who hold the advantage.

Hakim Ziyech after scoring for Ajax at Valencia
Hakim Ziyech after scoring for Ajax at Valencia ©Getty Images

It is all to play for as Ajax meet Valencia in the final round of Group H games with both sides harbouring hopes of reaching the UEFA Champions League knockout stages.

• The Dutch side lead the way in the section, three of their ten points having come from a 3-0 success in Valencia on Matchday 2, Hakim Ziyech (8), Quincy Promes (34) and Donny van de Beek (67) with the goals to inflict Valencia's first home European defeat by a Dutch club. Valencia and Chelsea are two points behind Ajax on eight.

• Ajax will go through if they avoid defeat, or if Chelsea fail to beat LOSC Lille at Stamford Bridge; Valencia will progress if they beat Ajax, or as long as they finish at least level on points with Chelsea due to their superior head-to-head record. A win for either Ajax or Valencia will secure first place in the group.

Highlights: Valencia 0-3 Ajax
Highlights: Valencia 0-3 Ajax

Previous meetings
• The sides' two contests before this season both finished 1-1, in the second group stage of the 2002/03 UEFA Champions League. Ajax looked set for three points when Zlatan Ibrahimović gave them an 88th-minute lead at Mestalla in November 2002, only for Miguel Ángel Angulo to level two minutes into added time.

• It was also all square in Amsterdam in March 2003, Petri Pasanen's 57th-minute equaliser for Ajax cancelling out a first-half Kily González penalty.

• Valencia finished first in the section with nine points, one place and one point better off than Ajax as both teams progressed to the quarter-finals. Both were eliminated by Milanese clubs in the last eight, Ajax losing to AC Milan and Internazionale beating Valencia.

Highlights: LOSC 0-2 Ajax
Highlights: LOSC 0-2 Ajax

Form guide
Ajax
• Ajax won their first two games 3-0, at home to LOSC and at Valencia. They were then beaten 1-0 at home by Chelsea before a remarkable 4-4 draw in London on Matchday 4, in which Ajax let slip a 4-1 lead and had two players, Daley Blind and Joël Veltman, sent off. The Dutch club got back to winning ways with a 2-0 success at LOSC last time out.

• Ajax went all the way from the UEFA Champions League second qualifying round to the semi-finals in 2018/19, losing on away goals to Tottenham in the last four after conceding six minutes into added time to go down 3-2 at home and bow out after a 3-3 aggregate draw.

• Erik ten Hag's team lost only two of their 18 European matches in 2018/19 (W10 D6), when they became the first side in European Cup history to reach the semi-finals having come through three qualifying rounds and the first Dutch club to get to the UEFA Champions League last four since PSV Eindhoven in 2004/05.

• Champions of the Netherlands for the 34th time in 2018/19 – their first league title since 2014 – Ajax also lifted the Dutch Cup to claim their eighth domestic double, and a first since 2002.

Highlights: Chelsea 4-4 Ajax
Highlights: Chelsea 4-4 Ajax

• They kicked off this season's UEFA Champions League in the third qualifying round, seeing off Greek side PAOK 5-4 on aggregate after a 2-2 away draw and a 3-2 home win secured by an 85th-minute Dušan Tadić penalty.

• A goalless draw at APOEL in the first leg of the play-offs ended Ajax's run of scoring in 14 successive European matches, but a 2-0 home win booked their group return. This season's results have stretched their unbeaten away run in Europe to 14 matches (W7 D7). The second-leg victory against PAOK in Amsterdam ended a run of four home European matches without a win (D2 L2).

• Ajax lost 2-1 at home to Real Madrid in last season's round of 16 first leg, but turned the tie round with a remarkable 4-1 victory in Spain. Despite that result, and the Matchday 2 win at Valencia, the Amsterdammers have won only four of their last 17 games against Spanish opponents (D1 L12).

• Ajax have lost six of their last eight games against Spanish visitors in Amsterdam, winning the other two.

Highlights: Valencia 2-2 Chelsea
Highlights: Valencia 2-2 Chelsea

Valencia
• Valencia have picked up four points from their first two away games, beating Chelsea 1-0 in London on Matchday 1 before conceding a late equaliser to draw 1-1 at LOSC Lille in their third fixture. They overturned a half-time deficit to beat the French club 4-1 on Matchday 4 at Mestalla, where they drew 2-2 with Chelsea last time out.

• The Matchday 1 win at Chelsea is Valencia's only victory in their last seven UEFA Champions League away matches (D3 L3); however, they have won four of their last 11 (D4 L3).

• Valencia have scored only three goals in their last seven away UEFA Champions League matches and have not scored more than once in any of their last 11, qualifying included.

Highlights: Valencia 4-1 LOSC
Highlights: Valencia 4-1 LOSC

• Fourth in the Spanish Liga in 2018/19, this is Valencia's 12th UEFA Champions League group stage campaign. Finalists in both 1999/2000 and 2000/01, they have not reached the last 16 since 2012/13.

• Twelve months ago Los Blanquinegros were also in Group H, finishing third behind Juventus and Manchester United – who they beat 2-1 at Mestalla on Matchday 6 having earlier held out for a goalless draw at Old Trafford – to move into the UEFA Europa League. There they overcame Celtic (3-0 on aggregate), Krasnodar (3-2) and Villarreal (5-1) to reach the semi-finals, where they came up short against Arsenal, losing 3-1 in London and 4-2 at home.

• Valencia have lost only two of their 13 matches against Dutch clubs, home and away (W5 D6) – at home to Ajax on Matchday 2 and 2-1 at AZ Alkmaar on their last visit to the Netherlands, in the 2011/12 UEFA Europa League quarter-final first leg, a tie they turned round with a 4-0 home success.

• The Spanish side had drawn four of their first five games away to Eredivisie clubs, winning the other 1-0 at Heerenveen in the 2000/01 UEFA Champions League first group stage en route to reaching the final.

Highlights: Ajax 3-0 LOSC
Highlights: Ajax 3-0 LOSC

Links and trivia
• Having come through the ranks at De Treffers and NEC, making his senior debut with the latter in August 2010, Jasper Cillessen was an Ajax player between 2011 and 2016. He won three Eredivisie titles in Amsterdam before joining Barcelona.

• Have played in Spain:
Quincy Promes (Sevilla 2018/19)
Klaas-Jan Huntelaar (Real Madrid 2009)
Nicolás Tagliafico (Real Murcia 2012/13 (loan))

• André Onana came through the Barcelona academy but never made a first-team appearance before joining Ajax in 2015.

• Have played together:
Klaas-Jan Huntelaar & Daniel Parejo (Real Madrid 2009)

• International team-mates:
Daley Blind, Joël Veltman, Quincy Promes, Donny van de Beek & Jasper Cillessen (Netherlands)

Latest news

Ajax
• Siem de Jong made his 50th appearance in UEFA club competition on Matchday 5.

• Ajax suffered their first league defeat of the season on Friday night, going down 2-0 against Willem II in Amsterdam.

• The Matchday 3 loss at home to Chelsea was Ajax's only other defeat in all competitions this season (W19 D5). Their previous loss had also come at home to a London club, against Tottenham in the UEFA Champions League semi-final second leg on 8 May; four of Ajax's last five defeats in all competitions have come at their own ground, three of them in the UEFA Champions League.

• The Amsterdammers have won 13 of their 16 Eredivisie fixtures so far this season (D2 L1).

• Ajax had scored 32 goals in winning nine successive league fixtures before Friday's defeat, keeping five clean sheets and conceding only six goals. They have scored 52 goals in their 16 league games this season.

• Friday was the first time Ajax had failed to score in 24 Eredivisie matches.

• Ajax have scored at least four goals in six of their last eight matches in all competitions, the exceptions the 2-0 win at LOSC on Matchday 5 and at home to Willem II.

• David Neres suffered a knee injury during Ajax's 4-0 win against Utrecht on 10 November, and is not expected play again until early 2020.

• Zakaria Labyad injured his knee just before half-time at LOSC and is likely to be out of action until next year.

• Noa Lang came on for Labyad against LOSC and made his first competitive start in the 5-2 Eredivisie win at Twente on 1 December, scoring a hat-trick. He is only the second Ajax player to hit three goals on his full debut, emulating Henk Groot in 1959.

• Quincy Promes has 13 goals in his last 15 Ajax appearances, although he suffered a calf injury at Twente and missed Friday's defeat against Willem II.

• Ajax picked up the Dutch Super Cup, the Johan Cruijff Trophy, on 27 July when they defeated last season's Eredivisie runners-up PSV Eindhoven 2-0 thanks to goals from Kasper Dolberg – now at Nice – and Daley Blind.

Valencia
• Valencia have lost only one of their last eight games in all competitions (W5 D2). On Saturday they came from two goals down to win 4-2 at local rivals Levante in the Liga, the first time they had won a league game after being 2-0 behind since a 3-2 victory against Espanyol in December 2001.

• Of Daniel Parejo's seven goals this season, six have come from the penalty spot, including the equaliser against LOSC on Matchday 4. He has, however, missed two penalties in this season's UEFA Champions League, against Ajax on Matchday 2 and Chelsea on Matchday 5.

• Valencia have 26 points after 16 Liga games this season, seven more than they had at the same stage of 2018/19.

• Ferrán Torres has four goals in his last six Valencia appearances, including the winner at home to Villarreal on 30 November (2-1) and the final goal at Levante on Saturday. He had not found the net for the club since 10 March before scoring against LOSC on Matchday 4.

• Gonçalo Guedes was withdrawn at half-time during Portugal's 2-1 UEFA EURO 2020 qualifying defeat in Ukraine on 14 October after suffering an ankle injury, and has not played since.

• Cristiano Piccini (knee) has been out since 24 August.

• Geoffrey Kondogbia (hamstring) has been out since being substituted early in Valencia's 2-0 home victory against Granada on 9 November.

• Denis Cheryshev (thigh) has not played since coming off injured on Matchday 4.

• Mouctar Diakhaby (calf) came on as a substitute at Levante having not played since 2 November; Rubén Sobrino (thigh) had also been out since then before returning as a late substitute against Villarreal.

• Jaume Costa (muscle problem) and Ezequiel Garay (back) returned on Saturday having been sidelined since Matchday 5, when Lee Kang-in (thigh) made his most recent appearance.

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