Ajax host AS Roma in the first leg of their Europa League quarter-final on Thursday. Kick off in the Johan Cruijff ArenA is at 20.00.

Ajax reached the quarter-finals after a comfortable 5-0 aggregate win over Swiss champions Young Boys and Erik ten Hag’s side are confident of further progression in the tournament.

The Amsterdam side are on course for a treble with the club nine points clear at the top of the Eredivisie, while they also face Vitesse Arnhem in the KNVB Cup final in two weeks time.

Standing between Ajax and a place in the semi-finals of the Europa League is AS Roma, who saw off Shakhtar Donetsk 5-1 on aggregate. However, Roma have not won in their last three Serie A games and there are reports in Italy of unrest behind the scenes.

Roma boss Paulo Fonseca goes into the Ajax game under pressure with the club sitting seventh in Serie A. However, Ten Hag is not taking them lightly, “I just looked at that selection, it just contains 25 top players. They have so many options. There is always a good team on the field.”

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Maarten Stekelenburg is a doubt after he picked up an injury at the weekend, meaning Kjell Scherpen could start in goal.

Daley Blind, Andre Onana and Sebastien Haller, and Noussair Mazraoui are all out, while Perr Schuurs and Sean Klaiber are doubts.

At the weekend, Ten Hag lined up with Devyne Rensch in the midfield and Edson Alvarez in the defence, and it remains to be seen whether he sticks with this.

Possible Ajax line-up: Scherpen, Timber, Tagliafico, Martinez, Alvarez, Rensch, Gravenberch, Klaassen, Antony, Neres, Tadic

Roma will be without Stephen El Shaarawy, Marash Kumbulla, Nicolo Zaniolo, and Henrikh Mkhitaryan, while Chris Smalling is also a doubt.

Dutch right-back Rick Karsdorp is suspended for the first-leg..

Possible Roma line-up: Lopez; Mancini, Cristante, Spinazzola, Ibanez, Peres, Diawara, Pellegrini, Vertout, Pedro, Mayoral


Ajax 19/20 Draw 14/5 Roma 13/5

Can Ajax take a victory into the second leg?

Ajax are currently on a seven-game winning streak and haven’t lost since their 1-0 defeat at home to Atalanta in the Champions League on the 9th of December. That is a 24-game unbeaten streak.

Ten Hag’s side are full of confidence and free-scoring at the moment and they fear nobody going into the game with Roma.

The first-leg in Amsterdam should be an entertaining affair with both sides possessing attacking mindsets. However, it will be crucial for Ajax to avoid an away goal as they look to take a lead into the second leg.

If Ajax’s defence can hold tight and Dusan Tadic is in good form upfront then the Amsterdammers could be on course for another memorable European night.

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