If you want to know just how tight a game this could turn out to be, you only have to look at the first-leg Champions League contest between these European legends. Interestingly, Ajax arguably come into this leg with a little more momentum, as Juventus lost to S.P.A.L. in their last match, while Ajax tore apart Excelsior in an action-packed 6-2 clash.
When you consider that alongside the fact that Ajax only lost a single match between this and mid-February, then it’s clear that this will be far from an easy win for the home team. Plus, that’s not to mention the fact that Ajax are the leaders of their domestic league, just as Juventus are with theirs.
Juventus are something special, no doubt, but Ajax are no pushovers. If the home team forget this fact, then the away side will certainly be happy to remind them.
Juventus vs Ajax Prediction: Juventus 1-0 Ajax
That being said, we don’t think Juventus will underestimate Ajax here. This game is too important and they’re far too meticulously prepared. We expect, considering how important this match is to both teams, that we’ll see both do everything they can to bring their absolute best. In that case, with each bringing their A-game, we have to give the nod to Juventus for that ability to push themselves to another level in big-match situations. And it’s a level very few can match. It’s not a case of Ajax not being a strong team: it’s more that Juventus are just that little bit stronger. For that reason, our scoreline prediction is 1-0 to Juventus.
Our recommended tip: Juventus win
Despite the 1-1 drawn result of their first-leg Champions League match, Juventus still remain the clear favourites here. The home side come into this contest with a 57% win probability, which gives them a significant advantage over Ajax, who have just an 18% win probability. While both teams are at the top of their domestic leagues and have been dominant in recent performances, Juventus have pulled ahead of their opponents. Coral are offering 21/5 Ajax match odds, while Juventus have low-risk 4/6 odds on a win. Therefore, we recommend you bet on the favourites here.
We’ve already mentioned their 1-1 draw in the first leg. It’s basically impossible to avoid when making predictions considering its relevance. However, they’ve also had a handful of encounters in the past and they do seem to give weight to our scoreline prediction. They met twice in 2004 with each leg going 1-0 in Juventus’ favour. Their second couple meetings in the Europa League 2010 saw Juventus once again win by a single point. They got the advantage with a 2-1 win in the first leg, then held Ajax to a draw in the second. Thus far, Ajax have always put up a good fight but have failed to get the job done.
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Players to watch: Cristiano Ronaldo & David Neres
Juventus: Cristiano Ronaldo
It couldn’t really have been anyone else, could it? Cristiano Ronaldo returned in the first leg and was the difference maker we thought he would be. Here, we’re expecting no different. It’s what Ronaldo does. He is a game changer of the highest possible calibre. With him, Juventus have an ‘it factor’: the kind of player who can make history every time he laces his boots. Ajax have already had a taste of what he is capable of. Here, he might just give them the whole meal.
Ajax: David Neres
Yes, we’re going back to the well once again with David Neres as our pick to watch. This is rarely the case but sometimes two legs come down to two players above all else. And we think that may be true here. Neres cancelled out Ronaldo last time around and arguably outshone him performance wise. Few people, ever, can claim that.