Dutch giants Ajax and Premier League outfits Tottenham Hotspur face off in 2018-19 UEFA Champions League semi-final on Tuesday night at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.
Tottenham have been a hard nut to crack throughout this season’s European competition. After finishing runners-up in Group B that also had fellow semi-finalists Barcelona, along with Inter Milan and PSV Eindhoven, Mauricio Pochettino’s men overcame German giants Borussia Dortmund 4-0 on aggregate in the Round of 16.
The quarter-final contest with Manchester City was one of the most epic battles this season, as Spurs edged out their Premier League rivals on the away goals rule, despite losing the second leg 4-3. Since that match, the Lilywhites have lost two of their three league games, with their most recent fixture ending in a 1-0 loss to West Ham United at home.
Ajax, on the other hand, have been the giant-killing team of the Champions League this season. Having made it through the qualifying stages, Erik ten Hag’s men finished behind Bayern Munich in the group stage. The Eredivisie outfit then ousted holders Real Madrid in the Round of 16 (5-3 on aggregate), with a scintillating display at the Santiago Bernabeu in the second leg.
Ajax followed it up with another big scalp as they sent Juventus, who were one of the tournament favourites, packing out of the tournament (3-2 aggregate) to make it to the semi-finals for the first time since 1997. Having beaten Vitesse Arnhem 4-2 a week ago, Ajax will come into Tuesday’s game well-rested as the Eredivisie cancelled all league games for this past weekend to help their team.
Tottenham and Ajax have met just twice in competitive matches till date, in the UEFA Cup Winners Cup way back in 1981. Ahead of the mouth-watering contest on Tuesday night, we at The Hard Tackle take a close look at both the teams.
A winner between the two tonight, will increase the chances of making it to the 2019 Champions League finals later in June.