Dusan Tadic admitted he may have watched too many clips of Zinedine Zidane after the Ajax star produced a masterclass the Real Madrid great would have been proud of to send the Champions League holder out .
Tadic led the way as Ajax sensationally tore apart three-time defending champion Madrid 4-1 at the Santiago Bernabeu, the Dutch giant completing a remarkable 5-3 aggregate victory on Tuesday to reach the quarterfinals.
The Serbia international channelled Zidane for Ajax's seventh-minute opener – his clever turn on the ball leaving Casemiro in his wake as he set up Hakim Ziyech.
Tadic also teed up David Neres 11 minutes later before he scored a memorable goal of his own just past the hour, while Lasse Schone sealed the rout after Marco Asensio had pulled a goal back for Madrid.
Sold by Southampton ahead of the 2018-19 season, Tadic revelled in the victory as Ajax overturned a 2-1 first-leg deficit in the Spanish capital.
"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."
Everything fell in place
Barcelona-bound Frenkie de Jong was also in the thick of the action for Ajax, especially in the first half as Madrid was rattled by the irresistible visitor.
De Jong – who will join Barca at the end of the campaign – showed why the LaLiga champion invested so heavily in him with some breathtaking moments of skill, one particular passage leaving Ballon d'Or winner Luka Modric on his backside.
Reflecting on the result, De Jong said: "Fantastic to win 4-1 here. 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."
- More teams to qualify directly for reshaped Women’s Champions League - UEFA
- ECB launch cricket regulator to tackle discrimination
- Real Madrid defender Carvajal out until next year due to calf injury
- Manchester City charged by FA over player conduct in Spurs draw
- ISL 2023: East Bengal blanks NorthEast United 5-0; Silva, Sekar shine