Schalke 04 vs Ajax
UEFA Europa League Quarter-final, Game 2
Today, 21:05 (CET)
With a 2-0 lead from the first leg, the assumption is that Ajax will romp home in this Europa League quarter-final tie. But football can be a funny old game at times, and Schalke – on home soil of course – will fancy themselves of a least matching the Dutch side’s exploits in the second leg.
They can draw strength from the fact that Ajax lost the away leg in their last 16 clash with Copenhagen, drew 0-0 with Legia in Warsaw in the round of 32 and won just one of their three away games in the group stage: drawing at Celta Vigo and Standard Liege after beating Panathinaikos.
So the door is ajar for Schalke, who were outstanding at home in the group phase: beating Krasnodar 2-0, Red Bull Salzburg 3-1 and Nice 2-0. They drew with Panathinaikos and Borussia M’gladbach in the last 32 and 16 respectively.
With all this in mind, have the Germans got a hope in this fixture?
1. 1X2 Betting Odds
There is a quite obvious distinction that has been made by the bookmakers. They think Schalke will win this second leg, that’s why they are priced at 2.05 to get the job done with Ajax a whopping 3.80 (the draw is available at 3.60).
But as far as qualifying for the semi-finals of the Europa League is concerned, the bookies believe that Ajax will complete their mission despite being away from home. They are as short as 1.25 to finish what they started in the first leg! Schalke are available at a shade under 4.00 to completely turn this tie on its head.
2. Schalke vs Ajax Betting Tips
The sticking point in this game is Schalke’s lengthy injury list. They have ELEVEN, yes you read that right, eleven first team players out injured at the moment. We can’t list them all here but needless to say the likes of Klaas-Jan Huntelaar, Sead Kolasinac, Benedikt Howedes and Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting are all key players for the Germans.
Ajax are in the luxurious position of being able to sit back, defend deep and soak up the pressure that the Germans – who need two goals at least remember to force this tie into extra time – will put upon them.
The Dutch side are flying at the moment, and they are yet to lose a game in 2017 – W12 D2 L0 is their form in the Dutch Eredivisie this year – and so they won’t have any fear heading to Germany.
In fact, we think they are a smart bet to get a positive result from this second leg. Remember, Schalke are beset by injuries and yet they must attack with gusto to overturn that two-goal deficit. They will need to press forward and that will play into the hands of the exciting Ajax frontline of Kasper Dolberg, Lasse Schone and Bertrand Traore, who can counter attack at pace.
So, to be able to back the Ajax/Draw Double Chance at 2.00 is very exciting for punters indeed.