Champions League Betting Preview 19th & 20th Feb
After a thrilling set of games last week, we have four more Champions League ties spread across Tuesday and Wednesday for fans to enjoy. Another two English clubs are in action, with Liverpool playing on Tuesday and Manchester City playing on Wednesday. Both clubs are favourites to win their games, and they will be hoping to put in a ‘Tottenham-like’ performance rather than a ‘Manchester United-like’ one.
Just like Spurs they both face German opposition here, and they will be looking to show the world that the Premier League is a better league than the Bundesliga over the three games. Elsewhere Juventus are considered one of the favourites to win the entire tournament by many, and they begin their quest for that with a tough away game at Atletico Madrid. Rounding off the ties, Lyon host Barcelona, who are also one of the favourites for glory with the bookmakers.
Champions League Match Predictions
Liverpool vs Bayern Munich – home win
Lyon vs Barcelona – away win
Schalke vs Manchester City – away win
Atletico Madrid vs Juventus – draw
Champions League Match Previews
Liverpool vs Bayern Munch – 8:00pm Tuesday
Liverpool came agonisingly close to winning this competition last season, making the final before getting beat by Real Madrid. This season they are coming back and looking to go one step further, but they also have the Premier League title to challenge for this season, which is going to stretch their squad to the limit if they are contending for both at the end of the season.
Bayern Munich are facing a big challenge for the Bundesliga title this season from Borussia Dortmund, but despite that they are still expected to perform well in the Champions League. They went unbeaten in the group stage, and also conceded just five goals from six games showing they are still a force in this competition. However, the feeling is that they may have missed their opportunity to win it, and they are now on a slow decline.
While the name of Bayern Munich means a lot, this team is a little lower in quality than what we have seen from them in recent years. Liverpool are an exciting team and love a big European night at home. I think we will see them win this, and take an advantage to Germany with them for the second leg.
Lyon vs Barcelona – 8:00pm Tuesday
Lyon held a remarkable record in the group stages, qualifying for this round despite winning just one game out of six. That was a shock victory over Manchester City, and then they went onto draw every other game, so they actually remained unbeaten in a bizarre set of games.
Barcelona are among the favourites to lift the trophy this season, and it is no surprise given the talent they have in their squad. However, if there is on criticism of them it is that they have failed to win as many European cups as they should have, given the talent at the Nou Camp. Four wins and two draws from their group games helped Barcelona qualify with ease, and they will be looking to bring that form through with them into the knockout round.
While Lyon will be hoping to cause a big shock here, they look to be up against it. They have shown their ability to draw games and keep things tight, but eventually I think Barcelona will find a way through to win.
Schalke vs Manchester City – 8:00pm Wednesday
The third and final clash between a Premier League team and a Bundesliga team in this round, and out of the three this could be the most one-sided game over two legs. We have the reigning Premier League champions in Manchester City taking on Schalke, and many think that City will go very close to winning the lot here, and this has been spoken about as being their year.
Schalke finished second in their group, although it was a fairly easy group that they found themselves in, and they were not overly impressive. While they are the kind of team that can perform in the group stage, I don’t think they are made out to perform in the knockout round because the competition is too strong.
Despite being away from home for the first leg, I think Manchester City will be looking to take a keen hold of this tie and put up a good performance to win it. Of all the ties we have in this round, this could be the most one sided of them all.
Atletico Madrid vs Juventus – 8:00pm Wednesday
Of the games this week, this one could be the best of them. Atletico Madrid are performing very well in La Liga at the moment, and Juventus are top of Serie A and they are looking for European success on top of that. They signed Cristiano Ronaldo during the summer to try and use his experience in Europe to take them to the next level.
Atletico know how tough this is going to be, and they have to attack here to try and get an advantage to take to Italy with them. While it is natural for a team like Juventus to attack, they know the second leg is at home and they can be patient here, and take a draw home with them.
Both teams would have preferred an easier tie at this stage, and both can count themselves unlucky with how things have panned out for them. As far as this first leg goes, Atletico Madrid need to get a win here but I’m not sure they quite have enough to break down and defeat Juventus, so I am going to back the draw, which gives Juve the advantage going into the second leg.
Champions League Betting Odds
In a strange occurrence for the Champions League knockout round, we have two teams playing away who are odds on to win their games. These are Manchester City, who are 3/10 away at Schalke and Barcelona, who are 4/5 to win away at Lyon.
The other English club Liverpool are 21/20 to win at home to Bayern Munich and you get the feeling that they have to win this game if they want to qualify, travelling to Bayern will not be easy for them. The final game is perhaps the most intriguing from a betting point of view, and the bookmakers are struggling to split all three scenarios. Atletico Madrid are 9/5, Juventus are 7/4 and the draw is 2/1, all three are very similar prices and that shows just how tight this game is.
Those looking for different bets to place on the games this weekend may want to look at the first goal scorer betting. For Liverpool, Mo Salah is the main man and has scored many big goals for them since joining the club. He is priced up at 4/1 to get the first goal on Tuesday night, the same price at which Bayern star Robert Lewandowski can be backed at.
Looking at the Manchester City game and the best approach here may be to wait until we know which players are starting the game. Sergio Aguero is the 11/4 favourite, but isn’t guaranteed to play and Gabriel Jesus may start ahead of him, he is 3/1 to get the first goal. In the other game on Wednesday, all eyes will be on Cristiano Ronaldo after Juventus specifically bought him to lead them to Champions League glory and he is 10/3 to get the first goal of the game.
Champions League Betting Offers
888Sport Champions League Double Boost
Fancy a double on the games this week? If so then the 888Sport Champions League Double Boost is the offer for you, and gives you the chance to win a 25% odds boost on an in play bet that you place. Simply place a double on two games in the Champions League pre-match, and if the bet wins alongside your winnings you will also receive a 25% odds boost to use on an in play bet in the competition. Many people like to bet pre-match and in play together, and those who do that can take advantage of this great price boost on their in play bet thanks to the offer from 888Sport.
Betfred First Goal Scorer Double Delight / Hat Trick Heaven
First goal scorer bets are going to be incredibly popular this week, with some of the biggest names in world football taking to the field including Mo Salah, Cristiano Ronaldo and Robert Lewandowski. If you are placing a first goal scorer bet then Betfred is the place to do it. They offer their double delight / hat trick heaven promotion on the Champions League games this weekend, meaning you could be in for enhanced winnings if your player scores further goals.
If your player scores first and then goes on to score another you will receive double the odds, if he goes onto score a hat trick you will receive treble the odds and a great pay day.