A late goal by Brandley Kuwas earned Heracles a shock 2-1 win over Ajax their first victory over the Amsterdammers in 52 years.
Before the game kicked off, Ajax boss Marcel Keizer confirmed Davinson Sanchez had been left out of the squad after strong links to Tottenham Hotspur. Mitchell Dijks replaced the Colombian with Nick Viergever moving into the centre.
In the 11th minute, Heracles claimed a handball by Viergever in the box after the defender blocked Jeff Hardeveld’s shot. However, referee Kevin Blom waved play on. After that Ajax began to take control but Bram Castro saved from Justin Kluivert and Donny van de Beek, while Dijks lashed a shot just over the bar as the half ended goalless.
In the 56th minute, Ajax finally netted the opener with Hakim Ziyech lashing the ball past Castro from inside the box. However the lead only lasted a few minutes before Paul Gladon got ahead of Matthijs de Ligt and flicked a cross past Andre Onana.
Ajax went looking for the lead but Amin Younes and Kasper Dolberg missed good chances, while Klaas-Jan Huntelaar came off the bench to no avail. In the end it was Brandley Kuwas who proved to be the matchwinner as the winger curled an excellent strike into the top corner.
The visitors couldn’t find the equaliser and they begin the season with a shock loss. They must now pick themselves up for the first leg of their Europa League play-off with Rosenborg on Thursday.