Own goal gifts Liverpool narrow win over Ajax in Amsterdam

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Liverpool returned to winning ways with a hard-fought 1-0 win over Ajax in their opening Champions League group stage fixture. 

Having lost two and drawn one of their last three games and suffered a number of injury setbacks in recent days, Jurgen Klopp’s side were in need of a positive result.

With no Virgil van Dijk in the side due to the serious knee injury suffered at the weekend, Fabinho dropped back into central defence alongside Joe Gomez.

It was a nervy start at the back for Jurgen Klopp’s men though, with Ajax creating a number of openings to take the lead.

Goalkeeper Adrian, who has made a number of errors since coming into the side in place of Alisson Becker, did little to ease those nerves when his attempted clearance was charged down by Dusan Tadic and was lucky to see the ball ricochet away from goal.

But Liverpool settled into the game and soon looked to start counter-attacking their Dutch opponents who were throwing plenty forward in possession.

And after soaking up the pressure, it was the Reds who took the lead in the 35th minute when Sadio Mane’s scuffed shot was turned into his own net by Nicolás Tagliafico.

Their advantage was almost wiped out before the half-time break as the home side continued to press forward, but Fabinho was on hand to brilliantly clear off the line after Tadic had lobbed Adrian.

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Ajax continued to show their attacking intent immediately after the restart and came within inches of drawing level, only for former Everton midfielder Davy Klaassen to see his shot beat Adrian but cannon back off the post.

Quincy Promes saw another Ajax effort saved in the 58th minute after a flowing move, but Adrian turned it away for a corner.

But despite bringing on Klaas Jan Huntelaar and Lassina Traoré in the dying minutes, the Dutchmen could not find a way past a stubborn Liverpool defence to salvage at least a point.