As last season’s UEFA Champions League semi-finalists, Ajax Amsterdam, fell to Getafe in the first leg of a last-32 UEFA Europa League tie, Ryan Babel made the headlines with a fake dive imitating his opponent’s theatrics.
Ajax had a horrid show on Thursday night as they were restricted to just two shots away from home in a 2-0 loss. After Brazilian forward Deyverson scored the opener in the 37th minute, Kenedy compounded on the Dutch champions’ misery with a deflected shot in injury time.
While Ajax were a goal down, precisely in the 55th minute, the 33-year-old Dutch left winger lost his bearings after fouling Getafe’s right-back Allan Nyom. As Nyom proceeded to roll around the floor in agony, Babel decided to mock his “over-reaction” by joining him on the floor.
Babel, who was booked for the incident, began to start limping moments later when Nyom proceeded to get up and try to return to the action.
Ryan Babel’s imitation of Allan Nyom’s blatant playacting is quite something. pic.twitter.com/avw5satQAg
— Colin Millar (@Millar_Colin) February 20, 2020
After the match, the former-Liverpool player was quoted saying to BT Sport, “I don’t know if I’ll ever do the same again. It happens in the heat of the moment. That guy [Nyom] was being very annoying. Getafe hasn’t impressed me.”
With Ajax having to do it all in the second leg now, manager Erik ten Hag was less than impressed with his team. Maybe more so with Ryan Babel’s reaction during the match.
“It wasn’t smart. I don’t expect that from an experienced player,” ten Hag said at his post-match news conference.
“You need to stay calm and use your head. You have to focus on your job, playing football.”
Allan Nyom rolls around on the floor after contact from Ryan Babel, so Babel lays down and starts rolling around next to him.
Nyom gets up and starts limping off the field, so Babel gets up and starts limping off the field as well. pic.twitter.com/Jtino3mkh3
— ESPN FC (@ESPNFC) February 20, 2020
In other Europa League ties, Inter, Arsenal, Wolverhampton Wanderers overpowered their opponents in comfortable wins. But, Manchester United and Sevilla were held at Club Brugge and CFR Cluj respectively.
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines