Ajax star Dusan Tadic acknowledged that watching so many clips of Zinedine Zidane may have had an impact on his stunning performance against Real Madrid.
The 30-year-old forward played an integral role in Ajax’s shocking Champions League victory at the Santiago Bernabeu on Tuesday night by assisting Hakim Ziyech and David Neres’ opening goals before getting on the scoresheet himself in the second half.
Lasse Schone’s spectacular free-kick then secured Ajax a 4-1 second leg win in their last-16 tie after Marco Asensio had got one back for Real.
The result ensured Ajax of a 5-3 aggregate victory and a place in the quarter-finals.
But the way Tadic had beautifully set-up Ziyech for Ajax’s opening goal by making a clever turn to leave Casemiro behind in the build-up led to comparisons with none other than Los Blancos legend Zidane.
“This is probably the best game of football I’ve ever played,” Tadic told Veronica TV. “We beat the best club in the world. I’m very proud and I think we made a lot of people happy.
“In football, you just have to relax and enjoy your game.”
Tadic added: “We have a very good team and we play nice football.
“Zidane was always my favourite player. Maybe I was watching too many of his clips.”
The Serbian’s team-mate Frenkie de Jong, who will join Barcelona for next season, also delivered an impressive performance of his own that will undoubtedly not have gone unnoticed by his future employers.
“Fantastic to win 4-1 here,” said De Jong.
“Although, to be honest, I don’t think we played much worse at home, we just had bad luck with the result. And tonight everything seemed to work out.”
Ajax will find out who they will take on in the quarter-finals on March 15.
Meanwhile, Erik Ten Hag’s side have a home match against Fortuna Sittard in the Eredivisie on Sunday to contend with as they look to close the gap down to league leaders PSV Eindhoven to two points.