Thierno Ballo’s early goal was enough as Chelsea won 1-0 at Ajax in their latest fixture in the UEFA Youth League this afternoon.
The victory was Chelsea’s first in the competition this season and gives The Blues a chance of qualification for the knockouts.
The game’s only goal came after just two minutes. George McEachran curled in a corner kick and Ballo climbed highest to head the ball into the net.
Ajax’s response was somewhat timid with Damjan Dostanic wasting a good chance to score before Marc Guehi tested home keeper Daan Reiziger at the other end.
The second half was every bit as starved of quality attacking play. The first 25 minutes of the half saw neither goalkeeper tested, a wayward header from Christian Rasmussen being the only shot of note.
Karlo Ziger was then called upon to push a Max de Waal effort around the post before Tino Anjorin sent a shot just wide at the other end.
Chelsea had their hearts in their mouths in second half injury time as they conceded a silly free-kick in a dangerous area but De Waal was unable to trouble Ziger as The Blues held on for three points.
The two sides meet at Cobham in a fortnight’s time as Chelsea look to edge further towards qualification.