The Champions League returns today as the semi-finals kick off. With just four teams remaining the road to Madrid is wide open. Any of the four could make the cut with the underdogs Ajax and Spurs kicking off things tonight. Tomorrow Liverpool face their biggest challenge when they take on Messi’s Barcelona. Can Liverpool take the heat against a Barca team looking for a treble and who will come out on top for the “underdogs”?
Semi Final Fixtures 2019
30 April 2019 21:00
Tottenham VS Ajax
1 May 2019 21:00
Barcelona VS Liverpool
7 May 2019 21:00
Liverpool VS Barcelona
8 May 2019 21:00
Ajax VS Tottenham
Tottenham VS Ajax
WHEN: Tuesday, April 30, 21:00 CAT
BUILD UP: Ajax have not had an easy run up to the semi-finals, they defeated previous Champions Real Madrid in the round of 16 and sent the mighty Juventus home in the quarter-finals. They have played a fearless style of football that viewers have found refreshing and they now garner the support of all neutrals watching the tournament.
Tottenham have lacked lustre in the tournament but they shone when it counted the most and sent Man City packing in the quarterfinals. The fact that they have gotten this far is pretty remarkable when you look at performance and now a string of injuries sees their team looking weaker than ever before.
HOW THEY COMPARE: In terms of practical playing Spurs are perhaps more pragmatic and with a home crowd behind them they might be able to exploit the fact that Ajax plays the same game home or away. Spurs may be down some star players with Harry Kane not confirmed match ready and Son booked off with a yellow card they may still be able to exploit the counterattack with Lucas Moura.
STAR PLAYERS: All eyes will be on Eriksen who is yet to extend his contract with Spurs, a Champions League trophy will look great on his CV. Having spent part of his youth and senior career at Ajax he will be eager to prove himself. Frenkie De Jong is Ajax’s star player and the 21-year-old will be moving to Barcelona at the end of the season. He is a two-way midfielder who is integral to the team’s success.
WHAT NEEDS TO HAPPEN: Tottenham need to find a midfield combo that will work seeing as they are down key players. Ajax must not underestimate Spurs and ride on their laurels after defeating to bigger teams.
PREDICTION: We think Spurs will pip Ajax to the post with a 2 – 1 final score. The teams match up evenly so it could go either way realistically.