Sunday, July 21, 2024

Ajax game abandoned after fireworks thrown on pitch; Tear gas used outside stadium to contain rioting

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Ajax’s match against Feyenoord on Sunday had to be abandoned after fireworks were thrown onto the pitch, and the trouble only started there. Frustration grew among the Ajax faithful, but the scenes at the Johan Cruyff Arena got further out of hand after the game was abandoned. Riot police showed up and ended up charging at fans as the crowd scattered, reportedly using tear gas to try and contain the situation. Fans were also recorded vandalizing parts of the stadium.

It has been a disappointing start to Ajax’s season as they currently sit 13th in the league. They were already trailing 3-0 only 37 minutes into the match while Feyenoord are in the process of re-establishing themselves as a European power in the Netherlands while participating in Champions League play. After being one of the top teams in the Netherlands for years, Ajax have yet to recover from losing the Eredivisie last season and falling to the Europa League.

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“The management and Supervisory Board of Ajax distance themselves from the misconduct that led to the abandonment of the match against Feyenoord on Sunday and the disturbances afterwards,” Ajax said in a statement. “This is not the behavior that belongs to Ajax. ” 

PSV and Feyenoord have made significant progress and are building on their success, while Ajax are currently closer to the relegation zone than to a Champions League place. While throwing objects onto the pitch is never an appropriate way to vent frustrations, it has become a more common practice in the Netherlands recently. When FC Groningen were relegated from the top flight last season, fireworks and smoke bombs were thrown onto the pitch as fans protested the team’s relegation from the top flight. The league has not yet announced plans to address this issue at this stage.

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