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SL Benfica welcome Ajax Amsterdam to Estadio da Luz on Wednesday for the first leg of their UEFA Champions League round of 16 clash (3 p.m. ET | Paramount+) and Adel Taarabt is looking forward to a clash which has a bit of a Moroccan flavor for him given the Dutch powerhouse's pair of internationals.

The 32-year-old will be going up against Zakaria Labyad and Noussair Mazraoui who were both born in the Netherlands but represent the Atlas Lions internationally and Taarabt admitted that he watches Ajax regularly because of them.

"For me, Ajax are one of the most attractive teams to watch," said the former Tottenham Hotspur and AC Milan man. "I follow them as they have a few Moroccan players and I think that they are one of the best teams in the Champions League."

Wednesday's clash pits Benfica against the form team of the competition so far given that Erik ten Hag's men have won all their games so far and qualified for the knockout phase with a 100% record thanks in large to Sebastien Haller's sensational 10-goal haul.

"Two big clubs with big histories," said Taarabt. "It will be a tough game for us, but we will be at home, and we will try to play to win. We will play the way we like which is to attack, they like to do this too, but it should be a very nice game."

Ajax are currently unstoppable across all competitions and on a 10-match unbeaten streak which has seen the Amsterdam giants open a five-point lead in the Eredivisie while Benfica are third in Portugal and six points behind Sporting in second after a 2-2 draw with Boavista which Taarabt scored in.

"We did not get the result that we wanted, but I was happy with my goal," said the Fez-born talent of his first half strike which helped to create a 2-0 halftime lead which was thrown away in the final 16 minutes. "We are looking forward to the game."

Taarabt is one of the more experienced members of this current Benfica squad and his experience, along with veteran defenders Jan Vertonghen and Nicolas Otamendi as well as midfielder Joao Mario, gives Nelson Verissimo a solid base on which to construct his team.

Although things have not necessarily been going to plan domestically and Bayern Munich were able to inflict a pair of heavy defeats, this is still a team which beat Barcelona 3-0 at home and drawing away to push the Spanish giants into the UEFA Europa League.

Benfica's mercurial No. 49 has shown flashes of his immense talent over the years after starting out with RC Lens before joining Spurs and then Queens Park Rangers as well as stints with Fulham and Genoa CFC on loan -- Ajax and their technical mastery could inspire Taarabt to uncork one of his vintage displays.

You can follow Benfica vs. Ajax on Paramount+ this Wednesday and in the following leg in mid-March.