Eredivisie round-up: Five-star Ajax enjoy anniversary celebrations with win against Sparta Rotterdam
By PA Sport
Last Updated: 18/03/18 7:31pm
Ajax celebrated their 118th birthday in memorable fashion with a 5-2 thrashing of Sparta Rotterdam.
The Amsterdam giants, who were founded on this day in 1900, conceded first and last at a chilly Het Kasteel but struck five times in between to remain seven points behind leaders PSV.
Relegation-battling Sparta had looked set to spoil Ajax's big day when they took a 32nd-minute lead through Michiel Kramer, but the visitors hit back in style.
Klaas-Jan Huntelaar equalised almost immediately and then second-half goals from Lasse Schone, Justin Kluivert and Hakim Ziyech (two) secured the points before Ryan Sanusi's late consolation.
Despite the victory, PSV still have a firm grip on the title race with six matches remaining, although their home match with Ajax on April 15 could yet provide a twist in the tale.
In third place, AZ stayed within five points of Ajax with a 3-2 home win over FC Groningen.
All the goals came in the second half with Alireza Jahanbakhsh netting a 90th-minute winner after AZ had lost a two-goal lead.
Jonas Svensson and Guus Til were AZ's other goalscorers, with Tom van Weert and Ritsu Doan responding for Groningen.
Robin van Persie struck twice in the opening 16 minutes to help outgoing champions Feyenoord come out on top in a seven-goal thriller at PEC Zwolle.
Karim El Ahmadi and Tonny Vilhena netted PSV's other goals in the 4-3 win, with the hosts responding through Mustafa Saymak and two late Piotr Parzyszek goals, the first from the penalty spot.
Also on Sunday, Donis Avdijaj's first-half strike helped Roda climb off the foot of the table with a 1-0 win at NAC Breda.