Real Madrid coach Jose Mourinho expressed delight at his side’s dominant performance against Ajax in the Champions League on Wednesday.
The La Liga champions blitzed the Dutch outfit 4-1 at the Amsterdam Arena, thanks to a Cristiano Ronaldo hat-trick and a fine acrobatic goal from Karim Benzema shortly after half-time.
“I liked my team a lot during 75 minutes,” Mourinho told Canal+ after the match.
“In the first 45 and then up until Ajax’s goal (in the 56th minute) we had total control of the game against an Ajax team that were different from their usual version, much more defensive than usual.”
Despite Real going two goals up, they conceded against the run of play when Niklas Moisander headed home Christian Eriksen’s corner.
The Ajax goal prompted a 15-minute period of dominance for the home side that Mourinho was glad to see end when Ronaldo scored his second and third goals.
“We lost a little control after Ajax scored, it became dangerous,” he said.
“Then we scored our third goal, Ajax understood that the game was over and we took control again.”
When asked how he felt that his side had conceded another goal from a set-piece, Mourinho said: “It’s difficult to comment. I don’t want to talk here, I want to talk inside the locker room.”
Meanwhile, Ajax coach Frank De Boer criticised his side’s display on Wednesday.
The Dutch champions have lost both of their Champions League matches and De Boer expressed his disappointment in their most recent performance.
“We have played quite badly. We have not reached our (best) level and when you don’t, you cannot win against Madrid,” he said.
“I’m disappointed, especially with the first 50 minutes. When it was 2-1 we created a bit more danger but we have not deserved to draw.”
De Boer said his players paid too much respect to Mourinho’s side and lost the tactical battle.
“We had to play solidly when we didn’t have the ball and search the spaces when we did have it. We didn’t do either and that’s a shame,” he said.
“I always say to the players that you must respect your opponent, but you should never worship them.
“That’s something we did today and in that way you can never win against a team like Real.”