Ajax coach Frank de Boer said his team deserved to advance in the UEFA Champions League more than Milan did.
The Dutch club dominated Wednesday's match in Milan with the hosts reduced to 10 players in the 22nd minute after a straight red card to Riccardo Montolivo for a tackle on Ajax's Christian Poulsen.
Ajax had 63 per cent possession and took 22 shots to Milan's three, while in the return fixture in Amsterdam in October, De Boer's side had 70 per cent of the ball and had seven attempts on goal to the Italian club's five in a 1-1 draw.
Based on those two games, De Boer said his team deserved to qualify for the round of 16, adding that Milan striker Mario Balotelli should also have been sent off for sliding into the back of Daley Blind in the 71st minute.
"If we analyse both of our games against Milan in the Champions League, I would say we'd deserve more than third place in this group," De Boer said.
"We always try to play good football, however, tonight I think anti-football won out.
"The red card to Ricardo Montolivo of course affected the entire game, as they went defensive.
"It's true that he totally deserved it because when you never tackle the ball but always the opponents' legs, you deserve to be sent off.
"Milan should be happy that in the second half Mario Balotelli was not sent off.
"He more than deserved a red card on the night and was lucky."