Real Madrid 1-4 Ajax (agg: 3-5): Champions League last 16 – as it happened

Dusan Tadic was the mastermind of a stunning Ajax victory as they routed Real Madrid to overturn first-leg deficit in style

Dani Carvajal on Real Madrid's terrible week

Sid Lowe's match report

Emails continue to roll in ... and almost all of them have the same subject title: Sergio Ramos. You know he’ll have the last laugh, don’t you? I don’t know when or how, but he will. He’s just that type of guy. So go ahead, revel in this moment.

Frenkie de Jong’s father John de Jong and Frenkie’s girlfriend Mikky Kiemeney savour the victory.
Speaking of revelling in the moment, here’s Frenkie de Jong’s father John de Jong and Frenkie’s girlfriend Mikky Kiemeney savour the victory. Photograph: Soccrates Images/Getty Images
Family from Matthijs de Ligt celebrate Ajax's victory
As do Matthijs de Ligt’s family. Photograph: Soccrates Images/Getty Images
Marc Overmars (left) and Edwin van der Sar celebrate victory over Real Madrid.
Marc Overmars (left) and Edwin van der Sar are pretty chuffed about the result too. Photograph: David Ramos/Getty Images
Klaas Jan Huntelaar of Ajax celebrates victory.
Klaas Jan Huntelaar enjoys a victory dive. Photograph: David Ramos/Getty Images

Updated

BT Sport have switched to highlights of the Dortmund-Spurs game, which suggests no interviews are imminent with the participants in this historic match. Would have been interesting to hear what kind of explanation Real’s players could have mustered.

“Is it ludicrous to ask as a Chelsea fan if a result like that one tonight for Real Madrid, signalling the end of an era as you say, could sway Eden Hazard to stay?” asks Ciaran Crowther. “I mean you could argue he’s essentially choosing between two basket cases at this point. Real Madrid and Chelsea are two unpredictable and unstable clubs.” It certainly strengthens Hazard’s negotiating position but Real need more than just him. They could go for Kante, too, for a start.

As for Real, it’s the end of the line for some of them. Kroos was ineffective, Marcelo didn’t make it off the bench, Ramos was in the stands preparing for a future that will never come, and Bale made very little impact after being introduced as a first-half sub. And Santiago Solari is probably thumbing a lift to the job centre as we speak.

Within an excellent collective demonstration, there were some wonderful individual performances: De Jong, De Ligt, Neres and Tadic were all brilliant. Mazraoui, Van de Beek and Ziyech, too.They have unceremoniously ended Real’s era of dominance; it’s just a shame this probably isn’t the dawn of a new n of a new one for Ajax, who will undoubtedly lose some of these players in the summer. But we can enjoy them while they’re together. Someone in the Premier League should take a look at that Tadic bloke.

Ajax players celebrate thier victory
Ajax players celebrate thier victory Photograph: David Ramos/Getty Images

Updated

Full-time: Real 1-4 Ajax (Agg: 3-5)

What a glorious day for Ajax! They have come to the Bernebeu and totally outclassed the European champions of 2016, 2017 and 2018! A refreshing team beat a real shower.

The final whistle goes and Daley Blind and his Ajax teammates celebrate a famous victory.
The final whistle goes and Daley Blind and his Ajax teammates celebrate a famous victory. Photograph: Soccrates Images/Getty Images

Updated

RED CARD for Nacho

Hands up who thought Real would accept this without a strop? Nah, Nacho gets himself sent off for pulling down Van de Beek and then squaring up to him. It’s what Ramos would have wanted.

German referee Felix Brych shows a second yellow card to Real Madrid’s Nacho Fernandez who walks off the pitch.
German referee Felix Brych shows a second yellow card to Real Madrid’s Nacho Fernandez who walks off the pitch. Photograph: Gabriel Bouys/AFP/Getty Images

Updated

90 min: There will be at least five more minutes, which is generous on Real. There should be at least nine given all the Var carry-on.

88 min: The game is fizzling out. Ajax are conserving themselves for the quarter-final. A bit like Sergio Ramos but without the massive ostrich egg on their face. Real are fading with a whimper. It’s en emphatic end to an era.

Real substitution: Valverde on, Casemiro off. The remaining Real fans - a goodly portion have left - boo and whistle and jeer. Warming up for the final whistle, no doubt. So long Solari.

85 min: Tadic latches on to a stray pass at the back by Real. He looks up and plays in a perfect cross from the left, leaving Ziyech with a tap-in .... but he lifts it over the bar from close range! Real spared!

Ajax substitution: Veltman on, Mazraou off.

84 min: De Jong gets caught trying to take the mick on the edge of his own box. Modric canters into the area, draws the keeper and rolls the ball to Benzema ... who falls over. Bale tries to convert at the back post but Onana makes a clever save.

82 min: Here is one of the roughly 3,498 emails I’ve received on the theme of: Ramos, Sergio. “I’m enjoying this result immensely,” bugles Peter Crosby. “A fine performance from Ajax. I would like to pause a moment once again to consider Sergio Ramos, that Captain of Sh*thousery, that master of the dark arts, and just one of the worst characters to have have graced the modern game. He has been so richly rewarded for that behaviour again and again, but tonight that run has ended in an absolutely perfect way. Thank you Ajax, thank you footballing Gods.”

80 min: Real are broken. There’s no hint of them coming close to scoring the three goals they now need. “This is getting to be downright humiliating for Real Madrid,” chirps Kari Tuilinius. “It’s nearly at the point where Ajax start juggling the ball, like the Ajax great Gerrie Mühren did at the Bernabéu back in 1973.”

Updated

77 min: This scoreline does not flatter the Dutch. It accurately reflects the superiority of a deft and dynamic team against a ragged band of names. It’s a real shame that this Ajax side will inevitably be broken up by buyers. But will they, like their forefathers of ‘95, win the Champions League first? It’s a long shot, but after this performance it doesn’t seem so ludicrous.

Updated

Ajax substitutions: De Wit and Dolberg on, Schone and Neres off

GOAL! Real 1-4 Ajax (Schone 72) (Agg: 3-5)

Oh my! With everyone expecting a cross, Schone curls a freekick directly into the net from wide on the left. There goes Real’s comeback! It’s an Ajax performance for the ages!

Lasse Schone is congratulated by Donny van de Beek (left) and Hakim Ziyech (right) after scoring Ajax’s fourth goal.
Lasse Schone is congratulated by Donny van de Beek (left) and Hakim Ziyech (right) after scoring Ajax’s fourth goal. Photograph: Soccrates Images/Getty Images

Updated

GOAL! Real 1-3 Ajax (Asensio 69) : (Agg: 3-4)

Reguilon makes ground down the left and picks out Asensio with a low pass. Asensio steers a low shot into the far corner. The start of a comeback?

69 min: Carvajal pulls the ball back from the byline. Asensio has a go from 10 yards. But an Ajaxa defender makes a block, as they have done every continually.

68 min: The ball runs to Bale 12 yards out. But it’s on his right foot and the his low trickler betrays a man low on confidence. It’s an easy save for Onana.

GOAL! Real 0-3 Ajax (Tadic 62)

After a delay of four minutes, during which several replays are consulted and each one offers different possible interpretations, the goal stands! The confusion concerned the tackle by Mazraoui on Reguilon by the touchline. He slid in and won the ball brilliantly but some angles suggested the ball had gone out of play, some suggested it did not. The crowd are invited to put the kettle on and chat amongst themselves while the authorities try to figure out what to do. Eventually, the goal is given! Which is just as well, because Tadic’s finish from the edge of the box was superb. Real are in a world of bother! They’re more of a shambles than Var!

Dusan Tadic sublime finish gives Ajax their third goal on the night.
Dusan Tadic sublime finish gives Ajax their third goal on the night. Photograph: David Ramos/Getty Images
Ajax’s Dusan Tadic, left, celebrates after scoring his side’s third goal with fellow goalscorer David Neres.
Ajax’s Dusan Tadic, left, celebrates after scoring his side’s third goal with fellow goalscorer David Neres. Photograph: Bernat Armangué/AP
Meanwhile Real Madrid’s keeper Thibaut Courtois looks dejected after conceding the third goal as Gareth Bale gestures and referee Felix Brych consults the VAR.
Meanwhile Real Madrid’s keeper Thibaut Courtois looks dejected after conceding the third goal as Gareth Bale gestures and referee Felix Brych consults the VAR. Photograph: Sergio Pérez/Reuters

Updated

Tadic scores ... but Var is being consulted

It’s a beautiful goal but will it stand?

60 min: Ajax’s composure is highly impressive. These young upstarts are making flailing oafs of the three-in0row champs.

59 min: I don’t recall Bale touching the ball in this half.

58 min: Benzema runs in from the left, duping Ziyech with a lovely shimmy-and-go. Then he ignores well placed teammates and tries to curl it into the far post from a difficult angle. He’s done it many times before, in fairness. But this time his shot flies wide

57 min: Real set up camp in the Ajax half. But the visitors are well organised and more dynamic than the hosts and they’re not offering up any easy openings.

55 min: Kroos plays in Reguilon, overlapping down the left. The full-backs stands a cross up to the back post. Benzema does well to get to it but his looping header is easily caught by Onana.

54 min: Blind heads clear a corner by Kroos.

52 min: Much like the first half, Real started brightly but are now being eclipsed by the more effervescent Ajax.

51 min: Tadic receives the ball with his back to a goal at the D of Real’s box. Then he spins and threads a pass through to Van de Beek, who had broke from deep into the left-hand side of the box. The midfield fires low towards the far corner but Courtois saves.

49 min: Asensio, on the right-hand side of the box, goes for a sweet curler into the far corner. It’s a decent try but a yard wide.

48 min: Carvajal makes a burst from the right. But De Jong eventually puts a stop to it. Moments later he does the same to Modric. He’s been a true boss so far.

47 min: Asensio tries to switch play from the right to the left but overhits his attempted pass. Some home fans boo, some offer yelps of encouragement. Real are in a right muddle.

46 min: Ajax set the second half in motion. Is it to be Real’s last Champions League action of the season?

Ajax’s players are in the tunnel waiting to go our for the second half with the demeanour of rock stars about to play an encore.

“I expect Jose to appear in the dug-out for the second half,” quips Mark Judd. Funnily enough, setpieces have looked like one of Real’s main weapons, but they’re lacking a Marouane Fellaini.

Outstanding so far for Ajax: De Jong, De Ligt, Neres, Ziyech and - almost as if Claude Puel got him wrong - Dusan Tadic, who has pulled strings beautifully as false nine type mischief-maker.

Updated

Half-time: Real 0-2 Ajax (agg: Real 2-3)

Real started brightly and Varane headed against the bar early doors. But Ajax took over after that and romped into the lead with two very nifty goals. They could have scored more, too. Bale hit a post a few minutes before half-time but there’s no doubt the visitors deserve to be in front and have, quite frankly, been the better team in the tie so far. The champions are teetering on the brink of elimination.

45 min: Kroos swings over a corner from the right. Nacho heads well wide from 10 yards.

44 min: Super play by Ajax. They’re technically excellent and far more coherent than Real.

43 min: Bale scorches his way down the left, carries on into the box and clips the ball over the advancing goalkeeper .... and hits the post!

Real Madrid’s Gareth Bale shoots against the post.
Real Madrid’s Gareth Bale shoots against the post. Photograph: Sergio Pérez/Reuters

Updated

42 min: Bale chugs down the left and slips the ball through to Asensio. De Ligt hurls himself in front of the 15-yard shot, making another timely block.

40 min: So far no cameraman has picked out Sergio Ramos in the crowd. Slack work. They’d best rectify that before the end if the scoreline stays the same (or gets worse): the whole world wants to know whether he is, in fact, capable of looking chastened.

38 min: Ziyech delivers an out-swinging corner. De Ligt leaps high to head goalward from 12 yards. A defender blocks it and Real eventually hoof it to safety.

37 min: Bale hoists in a cross from the left. Onana bounds off his line to punch it away ... but misses it entirely! Benzema nods back across the face of goal but Ajax clear. The goalkeeper breathes a mighty sigh of relief.

Real substitution: Asensio on, Vinicius off. The teenager suffered an injury. That’s the second enforced substitution from Real. It’s all going bits up for them.

Real Madrid’s Vinicius Junior reacts as he leaves the pitch after getting injured.
Real Madrid’s Vinicius Junior reacts as he leaves the pitch after getting injured. Photograph: Gabriel Bouys/AFP/Getty Images

Updated

35 min: Real simply can’t cope with Ajax at the back! The visitors are too nimble and too nifty and Real are constantly caught when they try to play their way out from the back. Courtois has just had to tip a shot around the post from Neres to stop Ajax from increasing their lead.

34 min: Ajax are looking comfortable. This has a distinct whiff of 1995 about it. Having said that, the way Ajax are playing, they could yet surpass the 2-0 victory that Litmanen, Davids & Co. sashayed to back then.

32 min: Vinicius charges down the left again and blasts into the sidenetting from a near-impossible angle.

31 min: Neres threatens to embarrass Real again on the counter, so Carvajal gives him a boot to make him stop. That’s the most deserved yellow card you’ll see today, especially as Ramos isn’t on the pitch ... because he got himself suspended to ensure he’d be available for the quarter-final. D’oh!

David Neres of Ajax and Daniel Carvajal of Real Madrid battle for the ball.
David Neres of Ajax and Daniel Carvajal of Real Madrid battle for the ball. Photograph: Denis Doyle/Getty Images

Updated

Real substitution: Bale on, Vazquez off. In their hour of need, Real fans cheer the Welshman on to the pitch. Fickle lot, aren’t they?

29 min: Gareth Bale is has warmed up and removed his top. It looks like he’s about to come on to replace Vazquez, who seems to have picked up an injury. Wouldn’t it be a rum thing if, after those boos at the weekend, Bale sprang to Real’s rescue now? “Why do I get the feeling that Ajax could be 0-4 with 5 mins to go and Madrid would still find a way,” wonders Paul Fitzgerald.

27 min: Vinicius’ speed is troubling Mazroui down the left, so much so that the defender has just got a booking for pulling hi down. He’ll miss the first leg of the quarter-final if Ajax hold on and advance. I say ‘hold on’, but they’re looking at least as likely as Real to score the next goal.

26 min: With a body feint and a neat turn, De Jong makes fools of two Real players in midfield. He’s endearing himself more to Barcelona fans every time he gets possession.

Real Madrid’s Casemiro (left) and Dani Carvajal combine to try and dispossess Ajax’s Frenkie de Jong.,
Real Madrid’s Casemiro (left) and Dani Carvajal combine to try and dispossess Ajax’s Frenkie de Jong., Photograph: Juanjo Martin/EPA

Updated

24 min: Onano makes a save from Benzema after a strong break down the left by Vinicius. Varane commits a foul from the ensuing corner.

22 min: After a botched Real corner, Ajax launch forward. Tadic produces another fine pass, bisecting the very exposed Real defence. Suddenly Neres is bearing down on goal! He tries to lob the out-rushing Courtois from 15 yards, but his shot drops a couple of yards wide.

Updated

GOAL! Real 0-2 Ajax (Neres 18) (Agg: 2:3)

What a lovely goal! And what a sensation we have in the making here! Tadic did superbly in the build-up, holding off one opponents before pirouetting past Casemiro and nudging a perfect pass through to Neres, who sidesteps the advancing Courtois and clips the ball into the empty net! The three-in-a-row European champions are on the ropes!

David Neres scores Ajax’s second goal.
David Neres scores Ajax’s second goal. Photograph: Sergio Pérez/Reuters
Ajax’s David Neres celebrates scoring their second goal with Matthijs de Ligt.
Ajax’s David Neres celebrates scoring their second goal with Matthijs de Ligt. Photograph: Sergio Pérez/Reuters

Updated

16 min: Benzema tries to slip a pass through to Vinicius as Real break. The teenager’s control is sloppy but he’s fortunate that the ball ricochets out of De Ligt for a corner.

14 min: Patient play by Real culminates with a deliciously subtle tee-up by Modric for Kroos, whose 20-yard shot is an affront to what went before it. Way, way wide.

12 min: Two outrageous pieces of skill - first by De Jong and then by Neres- elicit gasps of admiration from the home fans (and possibly of envy, given that De Jong is on his way to Barcelona). But Neres then overruns the ball on the left. Lucky for Carvajal, who was flummoxed by the winger’s trickery.

9 min: The home crowd are staying with their team for the moment. And their try to repay them with a lovely intricate move. It takes a wonderful tackle by De Ligt near the penalty spot to prevent Vazquez from getting off a shot.

7 min: The goal originated in loose play on the let by Real. Tadic nicked the ball and dashed forward before teeing up Ziyech, who guided a low first-time left-footed shot into the bottom corner. The Champions League holders are in deep trouble even if they’re still in front thanks to their two away goals.

Updated

GOAL! Real 0-1 Ajax (Ziyech 7) (agg: 2-2)

There goes Real’s fine plans to settle their nerves! Ajax have the early goal thanks to a marvellous composed finish by Ziyech following sloppiness by Real!

Ajax’s Hakim Ziyech celebrates scoring the opening goal.
Ajax’s Hakim Ziyech (right) celebrates scoring the opening goal. Photograph: James Marsh/BPI/Rex/Shutterstock

Updated

5 min: Ajax try to build their way forward but Real’s tenacity in midfield is exemplified by Modric, who harries Schöne into losing possession near the centre circle.

4 min: A brilliant cross from wide on the right by Vazquez. Varane, who had stayed forward after Real’s corner was cleared, is free at the back post! He sends a powerful header from six yards ... against the crossbar!

Updated

4 min: Benzema does well to win a corner on the left and gestures at the crowd to crank the volume up even higher. Real are deadset on nabbing an early goal here.

3 min: Real have made a commending start, very much on the front foot. But Ajax have kept them at bay so far.

Ajax’s Frenkie de Jong clears the ball away from Real Madrid’s Luka Modric.
Ajax’s Frenkie de Jong clears the ball away from Real Madrid’s Luka Modric. Photograph: Gabriel Bouys/AFP/Getty Images

Updated

2 min: Benzema collects a throw-in on the right wing and tries to barrel his way into the box, but De Jong does well to get his body between the Frenchman and the ball before clearing.

Updated

1 min: We have kickoff. Real do the honours.

The last time Real Madrid fell at this stage of the competition was in 2010, when they lost 2-1 on aggregate to Lyon. The year before that they were turfed out 5-0 by Liverpool. Since then, though, they’ve always reached at least the semi-final and have been in four of the last five finals, winning the last three. So what Ajax are trying to do today is not just overturn a deficit but terminate an era.

The teams are limbering up on the pitch Ajax, whose fans are making a terrific racket, are wearing black and gold away shirts. Real are dressed as you knew they would be.

Teams

Ajax go with the same that started in the first leg, while Real make two alterations, and not only because of Sergio Ramos’s invited suspension. Ramos is replaced by Varane. In the other change, Lucas Vazques starts. which means Bale is back on the bench. Let’s see how he’s welcomed if he gets on.

Real: Courtois; Carvajal, Nacho, Varane, Reguilon; Kroos, Casemiro, Modric; Lucas Vazquez, Benzema, Vinicius

Subs: Navas, Vallejo, Bale, Marcelo, Valverde, Asensio, Ceballos

Ajax: Onana; Mazraoui, De Ligt, Blind, Tagliafico; Schöne, Van de Beek, De Jong; Ziyech, Tadic, Neres

Subs: Varela, Veltman, Sinkgraven, Huntelaar, Labyad, Dolbert, De Wit

Ref: F Brych (Ger)

Updated

The story so far ...

A team that won 2-1 in the away leg should have a glide in their stride going into the return match, but Real are a-wobblin’. They know they were a trifle jammy to make it out of Amsterdam with a win in the first leg match and they’ve lost three of their four games since then while being dumped out of their domestic cup and effectively out of the Spanish title race, too. They’re struggling to score freely and their fans are lobbing scorn at their players, even the ones that seldom play, most particularly Gareth Bale. So they’re a club under serious pressure. If Ajax, who outplayed them for stretches in the first leg, were to land an early blow on their hosts today, then we know how the Bernebeu not-so-faithful would react; but how would Real’s players respond? That’s what the neutrals among us would like to find out. So come on, Ajax! (OK, that didn’t sound very neutral). The prospect of the winners of the last three Champions Leagues (and semi-finalists in each of the last eight seasons) being eliminated at the last 16 stage would surely inspire a spectacular fightback or a monumental collapse. So come on, Ajax, land that early blow!

But are Ajax really good enough to do that? Well they’ve been scoring with abandon since the first leg, plundering 13 goals in three matches, albeit not against the likes of Barcelona (but a 3-0 win at Feyenoord will never be sniffed at by Ajax fans). And they’ve got some of the most exciting young talents in Europe, from goalkeeper Andre Onana and defender Mathias De Light to midfielder Frankie de Jong (who’ll join Barcelona in the summer) and the 25-year-old forward Hakim Ziyech. That might not make them quite as gifted as the Ajax team who put on an unforgettable demonstration on this ground in 1995 but, given Real’s current woes, another 2-0 away win is not out of the question, though it is unlikely. Let’s be having you!