Amsterdam – Russian Premier League side FK Rostov battled to a 1-1 draw with Dutch runners-up Ajax on 16 August in the first leg of the UEFA Champions League play-offs.
Ecuadorian midfielder Christian Noboa got Rostov on the board with an expertly taken free kick in the 13th minute that beat Dutch national team keeper Jasper Cillessen at the far post.
Later in the first half Rostov keeper Soslan Dzhanayev was called into action when he stopped a shot from outside the penalty area by Anwar El Ghazi. The replay and goal line technology showed that the ball came dangerously close to crossing the line.
Ajax finally got on the board when captain Davy Klaassen converted a penalty kick with seven minutes remaining in the first half to tie the score at 1-1 and give the fans something to cheer about at Amsterdam Arena.
Rostov brought on young Iranian stars Sardar Azmoun and Saeid Ezatolahi in the second half for some added firepower but the match would end in a 1-1 draw.
Ajax were the better side throughout the match as they dominated possession and out shot Rostov ten to two but the Russian runners-up can feel confident leaving Amsterdam with a tie and a crucial away goal.
The return leg will be played in Rostov on 24 August.