Ajax v Juventus Betting Preview: Latest odds, team news, tips and predictions

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Ajax v Juventus

Champions League: Wed, 10/04  StadiumJohan Cruijff Arena

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This is a difficult game to pick based on the success Ajax had over holders Real Madrid at the Bernabéu as well as remaining undefeated in a group stage that included Bayern Munich. This certainly isn’t a foregone conclusion in Juventus’ favour but the form of the Italians could just see them nick a crucial away victory. With Ronaldo returning and desperate to win a Champions League with a third team, we feel that the Italians will be too strong for Ajax and subsequently should be backed at generous odds of 12/5 with Bet365. Ronaldo can be backed at 10/11 to score anytime.

*Odds correct at time of publication.

Ajax welcome Italian champions Juventus to the Johan Cruijff ArenA in a fascinating encounter between two European giants. The teams have six European Cups between them and both will have the belief that they can go on and add to their illustrious history this season.

Ajax come into this game on the back of three straight wins in the league and a stunning 4-1 reverse to knock out current holders Real Madrid. The Dutch side must have feared the worst when Marco Asensio scored a late winner in the first leg. But a spectacular display saw them run riot at The Santiago Bernabéu and win 4-1 against a team that had lifted the trophy for three consecutive years. This will give them extra confidence heading in to this tie and the belief that they can beat anyone on their day. However one major factor that was missing in Madrid will be a major obstacle in this fixture – Cristiano Ronaldo!

The Portuguese superstar has been carrying an injury and was a doubt for this game having picked up a knock on international duty but is likely to play some part on Wednesday. He has not featured for the The Bianconeri since his amazing hattrick against former rivals Atletico Madrid but the Italian champions have managed without him, winning their last three games on the bounce. With Juventus just one victory away from sealing their 8th title in a row, all focus can be shifted to the Champions League and ensuring their main players are fresh for every encounter. With a solid defensive unit and industrious midfield, the likes of Ronaldo, Dybala and Mandzukic make up a potent frontline that could help The Old Lady go all the way this year.

 

In team news, Ajax are likely to be without Hassane Bande and Carel Eiting, with both struggling to recover from their respective knocks. Right-back Noussair Mazraoui is expected to return after sitting out their last league game due to suspension.

Juventus coach Max Allegri was confident that Ronaldo would be fit to face the Dutch giants, with Juve also boosted by the news that Douglas Costa could return to action. The Brazilian winger adds an extra dimension to their play with his direct approach, pace and trickery to compliment their existing options up front. Veteran defender  Giorgio Chiellini is likely to miss out as are Juan Cuadrado and goalkeeper Mattia Perin who are also injured.

Historically Juventus have had the better of this fixture over the years and will be looking to continue Ajax’s barren run against them. Ajax last beat them in 1974 and the two teams have played each other nine times since then, with Juventus winning five and four ending in stalemates. With Ajax involved in a close race with rivals PSV Eindhoven, they may find themselves a bit stretched competing for both the Champions League and the Eredivisie. Juventus currently have a 20 point gap over their nearest rivals and can afford to rest key players prior to both legs, so they will definitely have the advantage going in to each fixture.

This is a difficult game to pick based on the success Ajax had over holders Real Madrid at the Bernabéu as well as remaining undefeated in a group stage that included Bayern Munich. This certainly isn’t a foregone conclusion in Juventus’ favour but the form of the Italians could just see them nick a crucial away victory. With Ronaldo returning and desperate to win a Champions League with a third team, we feel that the Italians will be too strong for Ajax and subsequently should be backed at generous odds of 12/5 with Bet365. Ronaldo can be backed at 10/11 to score anytime.

*Odds correct at time of publication.

 

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