22 May, 21:35
This year’s Europa League final will be more captivating than usual. Most people often dispel this competition as having a lack of quality and entertainment, but this season’s flood of goals and excitement proves that this cup is as entertaining as it should be.
Popular opinion suggests that this will be a walkover for Manchester United. However, the case for an Ajax win is a pretty strong one.
High pressing vs A parked bus
Ajax play with ambition. They look to impress a crowd with high intensity passing and movement that unhinges opposition with ease.They are young and fast. United, on the other hand, under Mourinho’s guidance are strong, solid and reserved. United would rather get one goal and defend the entire game rather than concede. They have proven in the domestic league that they would rather draw a game and avoid any risk of losing so much that it overpowered their will to win.
Another key factor in the game is expected to be the fitness of squads. Mourinho’s bemoaning of fixture pile up (whilst being petty) is the harsh reality of playing European football, and Ajax have certainly had longer to prepare for the Stockholm finale.
What’s more, the Red Devils have been struck by an injury crisis. Three names definitely ruled out for United are Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Ashley Young and Luke Shaw, as well as the suspended Eric Bailly. Racing for fitness before the game are Marouane Fellaini and Chris Smalling.
Meanwhile Ajax have almost a clean bill of health, with only Daley Sinkgraven (knee) and the Nick Viergever (suspended) missing.
Ajax have faced tougher fixtures
Looking at both teams’ routes to Stockholm, it is evident that Ajax have had the tougher run. Lyon and Schalke proved to be huge tests to the Dutch side’s resolve, plus Bosz’s men made light work of Celta Vigo in the group stages, earning a comfortable home win and an entertaining away draw in the group stages. This is the same Celta Vigo that made life very difficult indeed for United in the semi-final at Old Trafford.
Too much pressure
In football, pressure can be an asset and it can also be a liability. Manchester United are under too much pressure to win this one match after a poor Premier League finish. This is their only route to the Champions league and if they lose, it will be double tragedy for them.
They will be coming against an Ajax side that has no pressure at all.
This could be their undoing.
Famous psychic cow’s prediction
This reason should sum things up!
A cow famous in Holland for predicting the outcome of football matches has had its say on the Europa League final.It is bad news for Manchester United fans after the freakishly accurate cow named Sijtje thinks Jose Mourinho’s side will be defeated. Ahead of the clash, psychic Sijtje, who has a 85 per cent success rate, was let loose to predict who will be crowned Europa League champions.
With two buckets laid out with each club’s emblem stamped on the front, the owner then fills each one up with food. Sijtje is then let out of its enclosure and whichever bucket it eats from first supposedly goes on to win the match.
Sijtje picked Ajax.
With Manchester United legend Van Der Sar going public with his support for Ajax as well as former Manchester United coach Louis Van Gaal stating that he will assist Ajax in every possible way to beat Manchester United, it is safe to say that Ajax have what it takes to trump the pragmatic red devils.