With Ajax and Real Madrid appearing to be having parallel experiences in their respective leagues – with both sitting at exactly the same amount of points away from the top spot of their standings –, the Champions League is a chance for them to show the world what they are made of. They will each be hoping to take some of that momentum home for success on both fronts.
In many ways then, this is a battle of both teams and leagues, as each represents some of the best the Eredivisie and the La Liga have to offer, although Ajax have struggled to turn performances into points lately. Nonetheless, it’s a testament to their quality that anything other than the top of the league is considered a disappointment. For us fans, it means we are likely to get an absolutely electric game of football, no matter the winner.
Ajax vs Real Madrid Prediction: Ajax 1-2 Real Madrid
When you have two teams of this calibre, it really could go either way depending on the day. However, as good as they both are, one has been slightly better in recent weeks and that’s the mighty Real Madrid. They have been successful in their last five out of six trips to the Netherlands.
However, it’s not going to be easy, with Ajax’s high-scoring offensive style being a difficulty for pretty much anyone who stands in their wake. Real Madrid, who are no conservatives when it comes to taking the initiative either, will no doubt respond in kind. With that in mind, our scoreline prediction is a 2-1 victory for the Spanish side.
Our recommended tip: Real Madrid win
The away team hold the advantage going into this contest, according to both the bookmakers and the stats. Real Madrid enjoy a 50% win probability, with Ajax trailing behind with a 25% win probability – the same likelihood of a drawn result. The odds reflect this difference, with Coral offering low-risk Real Madrid match odds of 17/20. In contrast, the odds of an Ajax win represent a higher risk, at 13/5. Therefore, our recommended tip is to back the favourites to victory to enjoy the best chance of winning your wager and earning a return on your investment.
One key piece of evidence backing up Real Madrid’s status as clear favourites in this match is the head-to-head history between the teams. Ajax has never been able to beat Real Madrid in their history. Although with their last meeting coming in 2012, you could argue a lot has changed since then.
That being said, a six-match losing streak against Real Madrid – regardless of the timeframe – has to play on the minds of Ajax, particularly after recent struggles in the Eredivisie. For them, they’ll hope to avoid another repeat of that 4-1 clash, but history is far from on their side.
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Players to watch: Dušan Tadić & Casemiro
Ajax: Dušan Tadić
Upon his move from Southampton last year, Dušan Tadić called Ajax his dream club. Considering his performances since then, we imagine that the feelings are very much mutual. Ajax are well-known for their offensive capabilities and the fact that Tadić stands out so clearly amongst very stiff competition shows just what a quality player he is. They’ll need to throw everything at Real Madrid to get the win here, and Tadić is a big part of that equation.
Real Madrid: Casemiro
Injuries have plagued Real Madrid as of late. Jesús Vallejo and Luca Zidane are off with hamstring problems, Isco has a back and neck injury, and Marcos Llorente is out for nearly a month with a groin injury. Luckily, the well of talent at Real Madrid is very deep and they are more than capable of matching Ajax’s offensive might with the likes of premier goalscorer Casemiro. Just look at his spellbinding overhead kick goal in their match against Atlético Madrid as a snippet of his incredible talent.