Ajax – Steaua 14.02.2013
Impressive showings in the Champions League group of death have made Ajax one of the main candidates for the Europa League trophy,
but the Amsterdammers could face a tough task against very good Steaua side. The Romanians may not be in competitive action at the moment, but they arrive in Holland in confident mood.
With a number of more experienced players leaving the club during off season, Ajax were not given any chances to do well in the Champions League group of death that also contained Real Madrid, Borussia Dortmund and Manchester City. Nevertheless, Frank de Boer’s side produced several impressive attacking displays and managed to pip Manchester City to the third place, which allowed them to continue their European campaign. The team have been playing really well of late, with Barca’s Isaac Cuenca arriving to further improve the attacking department, and I have no doubts they will be looking to attack Steaua from the off. With a number of very talented players in midfielder and attack, Ajax can be trusted to score at least a couple of goals in this encounter.
Match: Ajax – Steaua 19.00h
League: Europa League
Our prediction: over 2.5 goals Odds: 1.75
Steaua have been in scintillating form this season and the Romanians only hope the lengthy winter break will not see them lose incredible momentum that saw them produce some amazing showings in the first part of the season. The Romanian giants are now ten points clear at the top of a very evenly matched domestic league, which allows them to fully focus on their Europa League campaign. The team have been pretty impressive in Europe this season, winning the group that also contained the likes of Stuttgart, Kobenhavn and Molde, so they will give their best to continue the rich vein of form against Ajax. Steaua have some problems at the back, but they remain lethal on the break and it is the counterattacking approach that could see them get a positive result ahead of the return leg.