Ajax Amsterdam Vs. Real Madrid, UEFA Champions League 2012: Real Madrid Takes The Lead In Group D
Thanks to three goals by Cristiano Ronaldo and a beauty by Karim Benzema, Real Madrid managed to get a 1-4 win at Amsterdam Arena. The victory allowed them to claim first place in the group heading into their matchup against Barcelona this weekend.
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Something about Ajax brings out the artistic in Real Madrid, who were to score a peach of a goal--a beautiful team effort that finished with a perfect cross from Kaká to find Karim Benzema who finished with a splendid bicycle kick--a goal and a finish that rivals last year's famous counter-attacking move in the same fixture played at the Santiago Bernabéu.
And that was before Cristiano Ronaldo was to get his hat-trick - his second in two matches.
Mourinho's made some important changes to Real Madrid's starting lineup for the game against Ajax. Kaká, Essien, Callejón and Benzema will start instead of Özil, Khedira, Di María and Higuaín. Modric will also be on Real Madrid's bench if needed.
Real Madrid's starting lineup: Casillas, Arbeloa, Pepe, Ramos, Marcelo, Alonso, Essien, Kaká, Cristiano Ronaldo, Callejón and Benzema.
Real Madrid visits today the stadium in which the club won its 7th Champions League title (20:45 CET). Ajax's condition of weakest team in the group makes this game a must-win one. Borussia Dortmund will be playing against Manchester City, so if Mourinho's team is able to get the three points against Ajax, the lead against the third ranked team in the group will be highly increased.
Real Madrid has faced Ajax in the European competition two years in a row. Mourinho's team usually does a great job against the Dutch team, and considering they always sell important players like Luis Suárez, Vertonghen and Van Der Wiel, they are clearly the weakest team on Champions League's Group D.