Ajax coach Erik ten Hag is proud of his team after the big win at Sporting CP (1-5) in the Champions League on Wednesday.

Thanks in part to four goals from Sébastien Haller, the team from Amsterdam started the group stage of the million-dollar ball sensationally.

"This was a very good performance, of course I can enjoy it," Ten Hag told





"If a team knows how to implement a plan so well, yes, then that is fantastic to see. There were so many beautiful attacks. We cut through it fantastically. That is certainly a compliment to my team."

Ajax had a dream start in Lisbon and, thanks to Haller, was on a 0-2 lead within eight minutes.

Paulinho brought the tension back for a while after half an hour, but thanks to Steven Berghuis and two more goals from Haller, Ajax booked a spectacular victory.

Ten Hag was of course particularly full of praise for striker Haller, who scored no less than four times.

"No one can imagine this in advance. This is a very exceptional achievement and only top players can do that. It's great how he did this. But that's Haller, he's unflappable. He has great statistics, that's how I know him and he proves it ."


View the summary of Ajax's sensational victory in CL

'He delivered an iconic performance'

Haller is the second Champions League debutant ever to score four goals.

"Marco van Basten also did it", Ten Hag knew.

"It rarely happens. When we forgot to register Haller with UEFA last season, I had to talk him out of it. But even then he was imperturbable under those circumstances. Now he has delivered an iconic performance."

Haller received a 9.5 from Ten Hag.

"And Antony offensively too, but defensively a 5.5. That really has to be better. But offensively he was great and elusive. I am not only positive after such a victory. In the group stage of the Champions League you have to play six games being top and focused for ninety minutes."

"At the end of the first half I saw a relaxation and the beginning of the second half too. I also mentioned our away game against Atalanta at half-time. Then we gave away a 2-0 lead and it became 2 -2. That's not allowed and it hasn't happened now."

Thanks to the resounding victory after one round, Ajax is in the lead in group C. Borussia Dortmund, which earlier in the evening won 1-2 against Besiktas, occupies second place.


View the summary of Besiktas-Dortmund (1-2)

See also: Ajax experiences a dream start in CL with a big win over Sporting and four Haller goals