Ajax v Juventus Betting Tips: Can Dutch side stun Ronaldo and co?
Preview and odds for Champions League quarter-final
We could be in for a European classic tonight as Ajax host Juventus in Amsterdam.
The tie is a repeat of the 1996 final. Juve won that night on penalties after a 1-1 draw in Rome.
A similar scoreline would suit Cristiano Ronaldo and his Serie A giants, but Ajax can’t be ruled out after stunning Real Madrid in the previous round. It’s underway at 8.00pm, live on BT Sport 3.
Two behemoths of European football, Ajax and Juventus will meet for the 13th time tonight.
The most recent meeting came in the 2009/10 Europa League round of 32. Juve won 2-1 in Amsterdam (their third successive win at Ajax) before a 0-0 draw in Turin.
But despite winning their last three trips to the Netherlands, the Old Lady have lost their last two European away games. Ajax have lost only one of their last 10 home games in the Champions League.
Looking at the form, Erik ten Hag’s men have won nine of their last 10 in all competitions, with Juventus winning eight of their last 10.
Ajax: Onana, Tagliafico, Ligt, Blind, Kristensen, Schone, Jong, Beek, Neres, Tadic, Ziyech
Juventus: Szczesny, Cancelo,Bonucci, Barzagli, Sandro, Pjanic, Bentancur, Matuidi, Bernardeschi, Mandzukic, Ronaldo
Ajax certainly have fewer concerns tonight when it comes to team selection. The injured Carel Eiting and suspended Noussair Mazraoui are the only absences.
That means Dusan Tadic can continue his superb season up front, with Barcelona-bound Frenkie de Jong pulling strings in midfield.
Juve boss Max Allegri has more to worry about. Juan Cuadrado, Emre Can and Giorgio Chiellini are all injured, and Cristiano Ronaldo may not be fully fit either after a thigh injury on duty with Portugal.
The former Real Madrid ace should start, but it remains to be seen how effective he is or how long he lasts after missing Juve’s last four games.
Allegri can still call upon Paulo Dybala, Mario Mandzukic, Moise Kean and Federico Bernadeschi.
Ajax hustled Real Madrid into oblivion in the previous round and they’ll be out to do the same tonight. It could catch the visitors cold, with Juve rarely tested in that way domestically.
But they will have to be on their guard. Juve still boast a dazzling away of strikers, and a set-piece connoisseur in Miralem Pjanic.
It’s a big night for De Jong. The midfielder has been excellent this term, but must find a way to get past an experienced midfield of Pjanic, Bentancur and Matuidi.
And then there’s Ronaldo. The Portuguese ace may not be fully fit but he loves the big stages and can never be discounted.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing