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Ajax takes the honours


AJAX responded magnificently to its weekend Eredivisie disappointment as Luis Suarez and Siem de Jong bagged a brace each at De Kuip to seal an emphatic 6-1 aggregate triumph over Feyenoord in the KNVB Beker final.

Already in the driving seat following its 2-0 first-leg win at the Amsterdam ArenA 11 days ago – also secured by a De Jong double – Luis Suarez’s fourth-minute goal put the result beyond doubt. De Jong notched twice in the second half – either side of Jon Dahl Tomasson’s consolation – before Uruguay frontman, Suarez, rounded off the scoring eight minutes from time to seal a 4-1 win on the night.

Martin Jol’s side, which missed out on the Eredivisie title to FC Twente by a point on Sunday, could hardly have wished for a brighter start as Suarez curled a shot into the top corner to put them three goals to the good on aggregate. The goal was met with stony silence by the 48,000 in attendance, with away supporters having been banned from attending both legs for fear of violent clashes.

The hosts looked to give their fans something to cheer about by getting back into the match but, from their best chance of the first half, no attacker was able to connect with Andre Bahia’s whipped free-kick. Suarez almost bagged his second seven minutes before the break but lashed just wide from the edge of the area, meaning the that Amsterdammers had to settle for a one-goal advantage at the interval.

De Jong changed that 20 minutes into the second period, however, latching onto Demy De Zeeuw’s neat pass and slotting into the bottom-left corner of Erwin Mulder’s net. Tomasson pulled one back six minutes later, tapping in after Jonathan De Guzman’s free-kick had struck the upright.

But any hopes that the hosts harboured of mounting an unlikely comeback were extinguished after 77 minutes. Suarez and De Jong linked up brilliantly before the latter blasted a low shot into the net to put Ajax 3-1 up on the night.

Not content with that, Suarez got his name on the scoresheet again five minutes later, firing into the bottom-right corner to complete the rout and ensure that his side did not finish the season empty-handed.

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