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UEFA Europa League Group B is finely poised as Matchday 4 approaches. Brighton and Hove Albion are poised for a glamour trip to Amsterdam to take on Ajax at the Johan Cruyff ArenA on Thursday 9 November. Roberto de Zerbi’s Seagulls are flying high and will be backed by a strong contingent of travelling fans in the Dutch capital.
For those Seagulls on the road in the Netherlands, what is the Ajax away section like? What can they expect from the city of Amsterdam as travelling football supporters? Can you an Ajax stadium tour? Or attend another game while you're there? What's the view, transport and security like?
All you need to know is below as Football Ground Guide gives you the lowdown on Ajax (a) below.
What is Amsterdam like for away fans?
As far as European away days go, a trip to Amsterdam is highly rated for many reasons, including short travel distance, nightlife, familiarity and much more.
Amsterdam is a fantastic city to visit which has something on offer for everyone. Beer is in plentiful supply whilst the infamous Red Light District gets lively after dark. Many will have visited previously, but it is not a place where fools are taken gladly. Enjoy it, but be responsible.
If a more laid-back experience is preferable, you couldn’t be in a better place. Amsterdam is home to many museums and places of culture. Your only problem will be deciding where to go.
It’s busy, it’s lively and in recent years, it is certainly more expensive but Amsterdam is well worth its reputation as a major European city destination.
— Brighton & Hove Albion (@OfficialBHAFC) October 26, 2023
Where to drink for Brighton fans in Amsterdam
Brighton supporters have been advised to congregate in the Dam Square area of the city centre which is a prominent location just a few minutes walk away from Amsterdam Centraal (main station).
There are plenty of bars, cafes and restaurants nearby with one option being the Euro Pub on the square. This is a modern-style, no-frills bar that serves beer with plenty of large screens around the bar for watching football.
A short tram ride away at Rembrandt Square is the Three Sisters pub. Beware if you enter this place, you could end up very comfortable and stay for the night. Good pub food is served, there are plenty of TVs and a DJ turns up the volume later on.
Where to watch football in Amsterdam
As mentioned above, Euro Pub and Three Sisters will have games on and are very good options whilst the Satellite Sports Cafe is another, as is Belushi’s.
The area immediately surrounding Dam Square contains many bars to watch football in Amsterdam, so you will not be disappointed.
— Brighton & Hove Albion (@OfficialBHAFC) October 27, 2023
What will the Ajax away section be like for Brighton fans?
The Johan Cruyff ArenA, formerly known as the Amsterdam ArenA before the passing of the Dutch football legend in 2016, is a modern stadium that still holds its weight after almost 30 years as the home of AFC Ajax.
At the best of times, the Ajax supporters led by the ultras in the south stand create a vociferous atmosphere but these are troubled times for the four-time champions of Europe.
With all still to play for in this UEFA Europa League campaign, it should be an atmosphere that is better than most Premier League games but the action on the pitch will dictate matters in the stands.
Ajax away section view at Johan Cruyff ArenA
The away section is located in the upper tier of the northeast corner of the stadium which is relatively ordinary, offering a decent view across most of the arena, except for those at the bottom of the section who will have partially obstructed views.
Brighton have released this guidance: “Supporters should be aware that there are 130 steps to climb to get up to the away concourse on the upper tier. Supporters taking seats in the rows nearer the back should note a further 70 steps will need to be climbed to get to the back rows. The lower rows, 1-10, require fewer steps but views are slightly impacted by the Perspex screen at the front.”
— Finbarr (@FinbarKeating) October 26, 2022
How many Brighton fans are going to Amsterdam?
An official allocation of 2600 for Brighton fans is sold-out, with many more ticketless fans travelling to the Dutch capital to soak up the atmosphere and make memories of their own.
How Brighton fans can get to the Johan Cruyff ArenA
Brighton fans have been advised to take subway line 54 from central station to Strandvliet-ArenA station which is the nearest stop to the away section. The journey will last around 15-20 minutes.
Visiting fans will use Entrance K which is just a short walk from Strandvliet-ArenA, with the turnstiles open two hours before kick-off.
Amsterdam ArenA stadium tour: How to visit Ajax ground?
The Johan Cruijff ArenA offers the option of a guided tour, in Dutch or English, as well as a self-guided tour at your own pace.
The guided tours include a glimpse of the dressing rooms, hospitality areas, press room and more, behind the scenes. The tour lasts just over one hour with adult prices starting at €20.00.
Tours run every thirty minutes during the week and every 20 minutes at the weekend. You can check all of the latest information on the tour schedule here, as well as prices and all other relevant details
Bookings are not required in advance, but can be made online to be organised and on time.
Johan Cruyff ArenA tickets: How to watch an Ajax game
If you miss out on tickets this time around to see live Europa League action at the ArenA, you can return for an Eredivisie game.
Tickets for regular Ajax games can be bought online, with all of the relevant information available here.
For games that go to general sale, any remaining available tickets can be snapped up at the ticket windows at the stadium.
An Ajax club card may be required in advance, but there is also a ‘visit Ajax’ package available for foreign fans or visiting guests wanting an accessible way to see a game at the ArenA.
How to get Ajax vs Brighton tickets
Due to significant demand, strict limitations were in place for Brighton fans hoping to attend this fixture with the supply of 2600 tickets, not able to meet the significant demand.
Fans can try to purchase tickets for the home end on the internet but should take care to avoid scammers and to act appropriately if attending the game as an away supporter in a home end. It would be advisable not to wear colours in the home sections and not to enter the traditional home end which houses the most passionate fans, where the ultras are based, which is the south stand at the Johan Cruyff ArenA.