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How Manchester United and Ajax have fared in previous European finals

A look at both teams’ record in continental showpieces.

FOOTBALL 18/05/17 10:46
How Manchester United and Ajax have fared in previous European finals

Two of the continent’s most illustrious clubs meet in the Europa League final next week when Manchester United face Ajax in Stockholm.

Here, we look at the how the two teams have fared in their previous European finals.

1968 European Cup final (Manchester United 4 Benfica 1)

Manchester United won the European Cup for the first time in 1968
Manchester United won the European Cup for the first time in 1968 (PA)

A decade on from the Munich air disaster, Matt Busby’s team became the first English club to lift the European Cup with a victory over Benfica after extra-time.

1969 European Cup final (Ajax 1 AC Milan 4)

One year after United’s success, Ajax became the first Dutch team to reach a European Cup final only to come unstuck due to Pierino Prati’s hat-trick.

1971 European Cup final (Ajax 2 Panathinaikos 0)

Ajax returned to the showpiece occasion two years later and this time they emerged victorious thanks to efforts in either half from Dick van Dijk and Arie Haan at Wembley.

1972 European Cup final (Ajax 2 Inter Milan 0)

The defending champions, who had changed managers from Rinus Michels to Stefan Kovacs since their last triumph, made it back-to-back European Cup successes with a brace from Johan Cruyff.

1973 European Cup final (Ajax 1 Juventus 0)

Johan Cruyff helped Ajax beat Franz Beckenbauer's Bayern Munich on their way to European success in 1973
Johan Cruyff helped Ajax beat Franz Beckenbauer’s Bayern Munich on their way to European success in 1973 (Peter Robinson/Empics)

The Amsterdam giants’ dominance continued as they won the competition for a third straight year, with their total-football philosophy proving too much for Juve.

1987 European Cup Winners’ Cup final (Ajax 1 Lokomotive Leipzig 0)

A new generation of Dutch stars emerged to lead Ajax to more silverware as Marco van Basten scored the winner for a team managed by Cruyff himself.

1988 European Cup Winners’ Cup final (Ajax 0 Mechelen 1)

Van Basten and Cruyff had both left by the time Ajax returned to the 1988 final and a goal from a Dutchman, Piet den Boer, delivered the trophy for Belgian outfit Mechelen.

1991 European Cup Winners’ Cup final (Manchester United 2 Barcelona 1)

In the first season in which English clubs were allowed to play in European competitions again following the Heysel disaster, Mark Hughes’ brace earned Alex Ferguson just his second trophy at the helm.

Mark Hughes scored twice as Manchester United won the European Cup Winners' Cup in 1991
Mark Hughes scored twice as Manchester United won the European Cup Winners’ Cup in 1991 (PA)

1992 UEFA Cup final (Torino 2 Ajax 2; Ajax 0 Torino 0; Ajax win on away goals)

Ajax followed Juventus in becoming the only clubs to have won all three UEFA cup competitions as Louis van Gaal claimed the first trophy of his managerial career.

1995 Champions League final (Ajax 1 AC Milan 0

Eighteen-year-old substitute Patrick Kluivert grabbed the winner for Van Gaal’s young side over a Milan outfit in their third straight final.

1996 Champions League final (Ajax 1 Juventus 1 (Juventus win 4-2 on penalties)

A fifth European Cup success eluded Ajax as Edgar Davids and Sonny Silooy had penalties saved.

1999 Champions League final (Manchester United 2 Bayern Munich 1)

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer netted a dramatic winner for Manchester United
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer netted a dramatic winner for Manchester United (Michael Steele/Empics)

Ferguson’s men clinched the treble in the most dramatic circumstances having trailed in stoppage time before goals from Teddy Sheringham and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer stunned Bayern.

2008 Champions League final (Manchester United 1 Chelsea 1 (Manchester United win 6-5 on penalties)

In the first all-English European Cup final, United won on penalties thanks to John Terry’s costly slip and Edwin van der Sar’s save from Nicolas Anelka in the driving rain.

2009 Champions League final (Manchester United 0 Barcelona 2)

United’s quest to become the first team to win back-to-back Champions League titles failed at the final hurdle with Lionel Messi outshining Cristiano Ronaldo in Rome.

2011 Champions League final (Manchester United 1 Barcelona 3)

A repeat of the 2009 final produced the same outcome as Pep Guardiola’s great team won again at Wembley in what would be the last final of Ferguson’s reign.

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