It was a night of fireworks on the pitch at Stamford Bridge as eight goals were shared between Chelsea and Ajax in this Champions’ League group game; not only that, but Ajax had both of their centre backs sent off and Chelsea almost won 5-4 after being 1-4 down. After beating Ajax in Amsterdam 0-1 last month, the return produced thrills and spills on the pitch, which made any firework party look like a damp squib.

The evening started with Chelsea topping the group, this after our 0-1 win in Amsterdam, however, after just one and a half minutes, a cross into the Chelsea area from a free kick taken by Quincy Promes flicked off Tammy Abraham and wrong-footed Kepa Arizbalaga giving Ajax a 0-1 lead. It wasn’t the start that we had envisaged, but the game was about to test our emotions, especially if pure agony and then pure ecstasy are your thing.

It didn’t take long for us to equalise, in fact, it was two minutes later when Christian Puilsic was fouled in the area, with referee Gianluca Rocchi pointing to the spot. Up stepped Jorginho with his hop-skip-and-jump penalty taking method and rolled the ball past Andre Onana. Just before the fifteen-minute mark we thought that we had taken the lead when a through ball from Kovacic found Tammy Abraham who put the ball past Onana, however, Tammy was just adjudged offside.

Coming up on the twenty-minute mark Ajax went ahead again when Ziyech crossed low from the right; Promes stooped and he headed low and wide past Kepa to make it 1-2. The game looked out of sight with ten minutes to go before half time. This time a free kick wide on the right by Hakim Ziyech hit what looked like the corner of the inside of the bar and post, bounced back, hit Kepa in the face and went into the goal. A magnificent run by Kurt Zouma through the heart of midfield, taking him past a couple of Ajax players, ended the first half after his shot went high and wide, but the great run and step-over, gave us a huge boost

The luck certainly evaded us in the first half and worse was to come in the 55th minute when Ajax went 1-4 up. Prior to them going further ahead, Tammy Abraham had tested Onana, but he made a comfortable save. It was van de Beek who extended Ajax’s lead further after a cross found him and he placed the ball wide of Kepa, to the inside of his far post. The Ajax fans who had made the trip to London must have thought that it was game over after that. However, Cesar Azpilicueta got it back to 2-4.

Then in the 68th minute a lunging challenge on Tammy Abraham was enough for Danny Blind to receive his second yellow card – he was sent off and in the process, Veltman was also sent off for handling the ball in the box, this was also his second offence. Gianluca Rocchi gave us another penalty and again, Jorginho stepped up and rolled the ball to the other side of the keeper this time to make it 3-4.

At this point there were still twenty minutes to go and it truly was game on again. Three minutes later it was spine tingling time as the agony of being 1-4 down turned to pure joy inside Stamford Bridge. A Willian corner was initially cleared only for Reece James to strike the ball right footed, low and hard to the left of Onana and it was 4-4! At this point Chelsea were firm favourites to grab a winner and when Azpi netted what he thought was the winner, eruption wasn’t the word. However, VAR ruled the goal out due to it brushing Tammy Abraham’s hand in the build-up.

After scoring the winner in Amsterdam, Michy Batshuayi almost made our dreams come true again in the very last minute of normal time as he turned in the six-yard box, but he shot straight at Onana who clutched the ball like his life depended on it.

With Valencia winning 4-1 at home to Lille it now leaves Group H with Ajax top with seven points, Chelsea second with seven points and Valencia third, again with seven points. With our next game in Valencia at the Mestalla on Wednesday November 27, there is still so much to play for in Group H, but a win there would surely seal our qualification with Lille at home to come in December.

Chelsea: Kepa; Azpilicueta, Zouma, Tomori, Alonso (James 45); Kovacic (Batshuayi 87), Jorginho, Mount (Hudson-Odoi 60), Willian, Abraham, Pulisic

Scorers: Jorginho (2, 71) Azpilicueta (63) James (74)

Ajax: Onana; Mazraoui, Veltman (Sent Off) Blind (Sent Off) Tagliafico; van de Beek, Martinez, Neres Campos (Schuurs 72); Ziyech (Alvarez 72) Promes, Tadic

Scorers: Abraham (2 own goal), Promes (20), Kepa (own goal 35) van de Beek (55)

Referee: Gianluca Rocchi
Attendance: 39,132

Scorers: Jorginho (2, 71) Azpilicueta (63) James (74)