Real Madrid vs Ajax Champions League Preview


Real Madrid vs Ajax Champions League Preview

After a 2-1 first leg success in Amsterdam, Real Madrid are closing in on a ninth straight Champions League (CL) quarter final. The omens are good for Madrid as they have won their last five home matches against Dutch opposition, although the last side to beat them at the Santiago Bernabéu was Ajax in 1995.

Despite this, the pressure is on manager Santiago Solari as his side have lost their previous three home games across all competitions for the first time under his stewardship. They conceded six goals in those three matches, with five of those goals coming in the second half.

Ajax put in a valiant display in the first leg and were unlucky to lose, yet they now remain without a win in their last seven CL knockout fixtures (D2, L5). However, since that defeat to Madrid, the visitors have won their previous three matches across all competitions, conceding just one goal and scoring an impressive 13.

Ajax have won just four of their previous 13 matches against Madrid (W4, D1, L8), losing all of the previous seven H2H matches, and scoring one goal or less.

Players to watch

Karim Benzema has four goals and two assists in this season’s CL, including a goal against Ajax in the first leg.

Hakim Ziyech’s first goal in this season’s CL came against Madrid in the first leg, although he has had 14 attempts on goal in the competition - the third highest of any player.

Stat attack:

Madrid have averaged nine corners per game in the CL so far.

Madrid have scored nine goals in their previous three matches at home to Ajax, conceding only one.

Ajax have averaged 2.57 yellow cards per game in CL so far.

Nine of Ajax’s last ten competitive games have seen over 2.5 goals, while the same is true in nine of Madrid’s last 11.

Xyzscore Safest Prediction: 12