Eredivisie Preview: Ajax targeting improvement
Second-placed Ajax face lowly ADO Den Haag in Eredivisie action at the Kyocera Stadion on Sunday having failed to seal their spot in the UEFA Europa League after they lost 3-1 at Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League mid-week.
The Dutch giants impressed throughout but were left to rue a great opportunity to secure progression into Europe's second-tier club competition on Tuesday as Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Edinson Cavani helped the Ligue 1 champions to victory at the Parc des Princes.
Ajax coach Frank de Boer will be demanding a less error-riddled match against ADO Den Haag, who hover just three points above the relegation zone after 13 rounds in the season.
"We can play much better than we did, and be better in the build-up," De Boer said afterwards on Tuesday.
"We made too many mistakes and we gave away too many avoidable fouls.
"It's very frustrating - even more so as we made a good start to the second half. It's just a shame that all that went to waste after that."
Ajax's league form has been almost impeccable, unbeaten in nine games since they suffered back-to-back losses to PSV and Groningen in August.
The Amsterdam club have scored four goals in each of their past three Eredivisie fixtures in wins against cellar-dwelling Dordrecht (4-0), Cambuur (4-2) and Heerenveen (4-1) last week.
Polish teenage striker Arkadiusz Milik has led the way during that period, scoring three goals, while Anwar El Ghazi and Lasse Schone have netted two goals apiece.
Ajax are two points off top spot but they could end the weekend atop the summit depending on the result between PSV and Feyenoord.
PSV welcome Feyenoord - fourth in the standings - to the Philips Stadion later on Sunday.
Phillip Cocu's PSV saw their lead cut to two points last week after an 83rd-minute Michael de Leeuw goal earned Groningen a 1-1 draw.
After back-to-back away fixtures, PSV are back on home soil against Feyenoord, who have not lost on the road in 12 Eredivisie matches - a run stretching back to January when they lost 3-2 at ADO Den Haag.
Feyenoord - seven points adrift of PSV - were 2-0 winners over Dordrecht last time out.
In other fixtures, third-placed FC Twente can extend their winning streak to four games when they host Groningen.
Second-bottom Heracles make the trip to Heerenveen, who are without a win in seven league matches.
Cambuur entertain AZ at the Cambuur Stadion, PEC Zwolle will be out to return to winning ways against Excelsior, while stuttering Utrecht play fellow strugglers NAC Breda.
Vitesse - on a four-game winless run - clash with Go Ahead Eagles and Dordrecht meet Willem II.