Ajax surprised Juventus to achieve the Champions League semi-finals for the primary time since 1997 as Matthijs de Ligt’s thumping second-half header secured a 2-1 second-leg victory within the final 8 in Turin on Tuesday.
Cristiano Ronaldo, bidding for his 6th Champions League name, scored a 28th-minute header to place Juve forward after a 1-1 first-leg draw, however Donny van de Beek levelled for Ajax prior to half-time.
Teenage centre-back De Ligt struck halfway via the second one length, despite the fact that, to seal a Three-2 combination win and arrange a last-four conflict with both Manchester Town or Tottenham.
The younger Dutch aspect had already eradicated three-time protecting champions Actual Madrid en path to the quarters, overturning a 2-1 house defeat in opposition to the Spanish aspect with a memorable Four-1 victory on the Santiago Bernabeu.
“It’s an unbelievable night time for Ajax and its gamers and likewise for Dutch soccer,” mentioned trainer Erik ten Hag.
“As soon as once more we eradicated the favourites.
“We mentioned prior to we weren’t the favourites however with our philosophy we will be able to pass additional, we’ve once more surpassed our limits.”
Juventus have been having a look to achieve the Champions League semi-finals for the 3rd time up to now 5 seasons.
However Ronaldo, who scored an away function final week with a diving header in Amsterdam, was once Juve’s handiest weapon in opposition to the spectacular Dutch aspect.
The 34-year-old was once signed for 100 million euros ($117 million) final summer time from Actual Madrid in a bid to win the Ecu trophy for the primary time since 1996, once they beat Ajax within the last.
“Ajax deserved to qualify,” mentioned Juve trainer Massimiliano Allegri.
“We may have carried out higher, however Ajax aren’t popping out of nowhere, they have been Europa League finalists two years in the past and scored 5 targets in opposition to Actual.
“It’s no longer our worst removal. We had giant expectancies, however the Champions League is a bizarre festival. It’s a must to arrive in top situation.
“Within the final month we’ve got been suffering with a number of accidents. Even this night we have been lacking necessary gamers.”
Juve pressured to reshuffle
Allegri have been pressured to reshuffle his aspect on account of accidents, with Paulo Dybala returning rather than the injured Mario Mandzukic, whilst captain Giorgio Chiellini was once additionally sidelined.
Ajax’s defence took successful when Noussair Mazraoui, who had changed the suspended Nicolas Tagliafico, limped off on 11 mins with an ankle damage, with Daley Sinkgraven approaching.
Ajax goalkeeper Andre Onana dived to stay out a sizzling Dybala half-volley within the 20th minute.
However Ronaldo latched onto a Miralem Pjanic nook with a downward header that left Onana without a probability.
It was once the Portugal famous person’s 126th Champions League function and 6th of this marketing campaign, having now scored in his previous six Ecu video games in opposition to Ajax, netting 9 targets in general.
However Van de Beek quickly silenced the cheers of the house crowd when he managed a wayward Hakim Ziyech shot six mins later, rolling the ball previous Szczesny to cancel out Juventus’ away function and make it 2-2 on combination.
Teenage striker Moise Kean changed Dybala after the damage, nevertheless it was once the Dutch who grew to become at the taste, with handiest Szczesny’s reflexes retaining Juventus within the tie.
The Polish keeper denied Ziyech from shut vary with one hand, and mins later tipped Van de Beek’s curling effort over the bar.
The Juventus back-line struggled with the tempo of the Dutch group with Pjanic doing neatly to disclaim Ziyech a tap-in.
However Ten Hag’s aspect’s incessant power paid off with 19-year-old skipper De Ligt towering above Alex Sandro and Daniele Rugani to go house Lasse Schone’s nook on 67 mins.
Ziyech regarded as though he had fired a 3rd previous Szczesny, however his function was once dominated offside after a VAR test.
And the Dutch guests hung on, with Ronaldo not able to make a distinction after his unbelievable hat-trick had pulled Juventus into the quarter-finals within the last-16 win over Atletico Madrid.
4-time winners Ajax received their 3rd consecutive name in 1973 on the expense of Juventus, and final lifted the trophy in 1995, with their final semi-final look finishing in defeat through Juve 22 years in the past.
Juventus now flip their focal point again to Serie A the place they are able to win an 8th consecutive name on Saturday.
“Ronaldo had a excellent fit, he scored. He’s dissatisfied like every folks,” mentioned Allegri. “Saturday we need to shut out the Scudetto.”
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