Rubio Rubin with Utrecht
Courtesy FC Utrecht

American Exports: Rubio Rubin comes off the bench to help FC Utrecht rally late for Ajax draw

AMSTERDAM – Second half sub Rubio Rubin helped FC Utrecht rally for a last-gasp 1-1 equalizer against visiting Eredivisie holders Ajax on Sunday afternoon.

The US international entered the fray with his side trailing in the 63rd minute to play right wing for the hosts. Three minutes later, Rubin concluded a space-eating run on the ball by teeing up Tommy Oar to draw a good save from Ajax netminder Jesper Cillessen.

Rubin carved out his own bid to tie the contest in the 79th minute, but dragged a 20-yard effort from the right channel a couple feet wide of the far post. After Gévero Markiet scored to level matters in the 85th minute, Utrecht were forced to hold on with 10 men for the final moments due to defender Ramon Leeuwin's ejection. In addition to snapping a two-game losing skid, 12th-place Utrecht stayed unbeaten in their last five home derbies with Ajax.

Elsewhere, Aron Jóhannsson worked the final half hour as AZ Alkmaar squandered a golden chance to close on the automatic Europa League slot, falling 4-1 at home to third-place Feyenoord.

Other than a yellow card drawn just after his entrance, it was a quiet outing for Jóhannsson. The US forward connected on 10 of 12 passes, but never threatened as AZ slipped seven points behind their Rotterdam visitors with five games to play.