Dutch giants Ajax will face this English champion Manchester United in arguably the most interesting clash of 1/16-final of the Europa League. For many, this match was supposed to be in the Champions League, but now both teams after dropping his then were forced to settle for second-highest European club tournament. The match between two of the greatest teams in Europe will be played on the pitch at the stadium “Amsterdam Arena” on Thursday.
Ajax dropped extremely ridiculous Champions League, finishing third in their preliminary group. Dutch team only needed a point in their last match at home to Real Madrid to secure visas for the second round in the strongest European club tournament, or at least allow minimal loss. Ultimately, however, “Ajax” recorded with the classic 3-0 defeat of “white ballet” and so were displaced from the second position of the French city of Lyon, only on goal difference. For the upcoming clash with Manchester United, Ajax coach leadership in the face of coach Frank de Boer, could not rely on one of its main pillars in defense Andre Oyer. Veteran in the ranks of Ajax treat injury and will not be available to his mentor. So security issues shaft of the Dutch team grow more, since Gregory van der Bel will be online for the upcoming match is expected to place his right-back to take a young Dick Kopers. In midfield the hosts problems also are not at least as questionable for the derby with Manchester United goals are three players – Theo Jansen, Eyong Eno and Derk Borigter. In the attack of Ajax, with problems and Kolbeyn Sigtorson Icelander whose participation in the upcoming match will be decided shortly before the meeting begins.
Manchester United rather surprisingly dropped from the tournament of champions after being displaced from the second position in the final standings of Group C by the Swiss Basel. So for the first time in almost twenty years ago, “Red Devils” will play a match in European tournaments, but not in the Champions League and Tournament Europa League. For recent graduates of Sir Alex Ferguson played in this race in 1995 when the tournament is still wearing the name UEFA Cup as one of the team in the composition of the United remained the only Welsh veteran Ryan Giggs and former England international Paul Scholes. Giggs will not be able to take part in the upcoming match against Ajax, as he, Dimitar Berbatov and Patrice Evra, never fell into the group match against the Dutch. Obviously the manager of the guests decided to give them a break, given the approaching decisive battles for the title in the Premier League. Besides them, the fight against Ajax will be skipped and permanently injured Darren Fletcher, Michael Owen, Nemanja Vidic, Andres Lindegard and Anderson. However, in the “Red Devils” have returned fully recovered Nani, Phil Jones and Tom Cleverley. At issue remains the sole Chris Smalling, and just before the match will decide whether to take part in the meeting.
Home-field advantage on the side of Ajax, but the Dutch team is far from what horror twenty years ago. Their form in the last few meetings did not bode well for students of Frank de Boer, which allowed the losses in their last two games at home. Although unlikely to approach very seriously matches from UEFA Cup, guests definitely remain a favorite in this match, I expect to leave with the victory of the stadium “Amsterdam Arena”.