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UEFA Champions League – Real Madrid-Ajax – Real Madrid v Ajax preview: all you need to know

 

 After back-to-back home defeats by Barcelona in the Copa del Rey and Liga, Real Madrid are in need of a tonic as they return to a competition that has been so dear to them in recent years. On Tuesday, they will have been European champions for 1,011 days, and what better way to pick themselves up than by finishing off Ajax? The heat is definitely on, but Madrid invariably respond when that UEFA Champions League anthem plays.

Possible line-ups

First leg: Ajax 1-2 Real Madrid

 

First leg: Ajax 1-2 Real Madrid

Real Madrid: Courtois; Reguilón, Varane, Nacho, Carvajal; Casemiro, Kroos, Modrić; Vázquez, Benzema, Vinícius
Out: Ramos (suspended), Llorente (adductor)
Misses next game if booked: none

Ajax: Onana; Tagliafico, Blind, De Ligt, Mazraoui; De Jong, Van de Beek, Schöne; Neres, Tadić, Ziyech
Out: Bandé (calf)
Misses next game if booked: Blind, De Ligt, Mazraoui, Tagliafico, Van de Beek, Ziyech

MAKE FANTASY CHANGES

See why Benzema loves facing Ajax

 

See why Benzema loves facing Ajax

Key battle

Modrić v De Jong: The Dutch press felt UEFA Men’s Player of the Year Luka Modrić won his game within a game against Frenkie de Jong on points in the first leg, but the Barcelona-bound youngster has a second chance to get one over on his Croatian counterpart. If De Jong can set the early tone, then his side will follow – and Ajax will have a puncher’s chance of overturning the first-leg arrears.

Where to watch

Fans can find their local UEFA Champions League broadcast partner(s) here.

Form guide

Klaas-Jan Huntelaar on his #UCL bow for Ajax
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