Ajax withstands Lyon comeback to reach Europa League final

Ajax withstands Lyon comeback to reach Europa League final

You play finals to win! - Ajax boss Bosz wants to make history

Needing to overturn a 4-1 deficit from the first leg, Lyon clearly wanted to get off to a flying start but Bruno Genesio's side displayed too much nervous energy in the opening stages.

Lyon have similarly relied on star striker Alexandre Lacazette to provide goals for the past three seasons, in which time he has scored 87 goals in all competitions, but with the Frenchman proving so consistent in his goalscoring exploits, Europe's biggest teams are lining up to take him from his boyhood club. Lyon had 28 shots on the day, eight on frame, with almost 60 percent possession, but Ajax goalkeeper Andre Onana came up with some big saves to move on to the May 24 final, where it will enter as the underdog against Manchester United.

The exploits of Coach Peter Bosz's young team, aged just under 23 on average, were hailed across the Netherlands on Thursday, the morning after they held out for a 5-4 aggregate victory in France over Olympique Lyonnais.

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Dolberg had scored in the first leg last week and is making a name for himself, having also netted 15 league goals this season.

Kasper Dolberg's exquisite goal proved vital as 10-man Ajax clung on seal their place in the Europa League final despite a 3-1 defeat to Lyon, who saw their dramatic attempt at comeback fall short.

Ajax will play United in Stockholm on May 24 after they both reached the final the hard way.

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Last month, European football's governing body handed bans to Lyon and Besiktas, suspended for two years, after crowd trouble marred their quarter-final clash. Of course wins help to win so we want that.

Lyon's players collapsed to the ground at the final whistle, some with their head in their hands. In recent times Lyon struggled with one win 3-2 at home against Nantes to keep them in 4th position in the table in Ligue 1.

Lyon had no option but to raise the tempo, but it was not until 79 seconds from the end of the half that they broke through when Matthijs de Ligt was adjudged to have fouled Lacazette.

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But after Ghezzal's header, Lacazette will remember his late missed volley for a few weeks yet. "After that, Lyon were better", said captain Davy Klaassen on Dutch television after the match. What's more, they've lost only four of their 11 Europa League away games since 2014/15, trailing at the break in just one of these.

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