Ajax coach Frank De Boer believes his young side are on the ``right track'' as they try to secure their place in the Europa League by ending their Madrid hoodoo.
The Dutch champions will bid to hold onto third place in Group D and outmuscle Barclays Premier League champions Manchester City into the second-tier European berth by scoring more points than their English rivals in their final Champions League group match.
Last season, Ajax saw their hopes of reaching the last 16 ended by Real with a home defeat and have struggled to find success in Spain over the years.
De Boer, who played in the last Ajax side to win on Spanish soil - against Atletico Madrid in the 1996/97 season - is confident his team can do enough to book their place in the Europa League after a morale-boosting Eredivisie win over PSV Eindhoven at the weekend.
''I think we dominated over eighty minutes,'' De Boer told NUSPort after the 3-1 win over PSV at the Amsterdam ArenA.
``Most teams dig themselves in when they arrive at the Arena. We have got increasingly an answer.
``I think that is a great compliment to this young team. I feel that we are on the right track.
``I'm proud of the boys. They have our concept to play for 90 minutes.''
However, De Boer has received a blow ahead of the Real game when it was revealed striker Ryan Babel suffered a setback in his recovery from a dislocated shoulder.
Babel picked up the problem against PEC Zwolle on November 11 and was expected to be out for six weeks but may now be missing until after the new year.
``I will be back after the winter break,'' Babel told De Telegraaf. ``The injury itself is not so bad but with shoulder injuries you have to be careful.''
Danny Hoesen, who scored in Ajax's 3-1 victory over PSV at the weekend, could be handed a start in place of Babel.
Jose Mourinho's Real have already booked their place in the last 16 and go into the match knowing second place in the group has been secured.
Real cannot win the group due to their head-to-head results with leaders Borussia Dortmund, so Mourinho could decide to change things around for the Bernabeu clash.
Defender Alvaro Arbeloa is suspended and could be replaced by Raphael Varane while midfielder Xabi Alonso may be rested after playing a lot of minutes in recent weeks.
Luka Modric could fill in for Alonso by dropping further back into midfield while defender Sergio Ramos might also be given a break.
It is unlikely that Mourinho will want to finish off the group stages with anything but a flourish, so Cristiano Ronaldo and Karim Benzema could still feature.