Champions League Betting Preview – Wednesday
Brugge v Monaco
- Monaco’s 2nd game in charge under Henry. He lost his 1st game in charge away to Strasbourg at the weekend.
- Les Monégasques injury situation is looking better and their only real absentee should be Falcao. Both Benaglio (GK) and Jemerson (CB) return.
- Moussa Sylla who hasn’t scored in 7 outings for Monaco this season will lead the line in Falcao’s absence.
- Brugge won only 2 of their last 7 in all competitions.
- Brugge’s attack will be blunted as well with Danjuma and Vossen both injured.
- Thierry Henry’ is very inexperienced at this level but he shouldn’t be too discouraged from his first match in charge, Luck definitely wasn’t on his side.
- Monaco lost Falcao after 30 mins to injury, he had to start his 3rd choice GK (Sy) and had a man sent off in the 65th minute. despite all this, it wasn’t a terrible performance and they probably could have taken something from the game had it not been for a Goalkeeping blunder and the red card.
Dortmund v Atletico
- Dortmund will be weaker at the back without Marcel Schmelzer (LB) and Manuel Akanji (CB)
- Atleti are close to full strength with their only absentee being José Giménez (CB)
- The Spanish side have lost only 1 of their last 7 road games in the Champions League and that came against the eventual winners that season (Real Madrid)
- Atletico’s last trip to Germany seen them thump Leverkusen 4-2
- Domestically Atleti have been poor away from home with only 1 win from 5 (v Getafe)
- Atletico have scored 5 goals in this season’s UCL from just 2.25 xG
- Not including the teams who played yesterday, Dortmund have the highest xG in the competition. However, they have played two very weak teams in Brugge and Monaco
- This is the 12th game in charge for Lucien Favre (8-3-0, 32:9 so far)
PSV v Spurs
- Vertonghen and Alli are still out for Spurs so they won’t be at their strongest.
- PSV have everyone available and will field their strongest XI
- The Dutch Champions have been excellent this season and currently Top the Eredivisie, the Dutch champs have only been beaten by Inter and Barca this season.
- The away game at the Nou Camp wasn’t as bad a performance as the 4-0 made out, PSV were very much in that game until the final 20 mins
- The 2-1 loss to Inter, however, was a different story, they were very much 2nd best with Inter creating a lot of good goal scoring chances.
- PSV have won only 2 of their last 12 UCL games (incl qualification) these two wins came against BATE Borisov
- Despite conceding 6 goals in the Champions League Spurs’ xGA is only 2.62 which indicates they’re not exactly giving the opposition great chances to score.
Barcelona v Inter
- Barca have two big losses with Umtiti and Messi out. Lenglet and Dembele will fill in
- Suarez missed training with the team yesterday from what I understand as his wife gave birth. He is expected to play but may not be at his sharpest
- Brozovic, Nainggolan and Persic are questionable but should be available for Inter
- Barcelona are unbeaten in 27 UEFA Champions League home matches, a run that started in September 2013
- Inter are flying now with 7 wins on the trot which includes a victory over rivals AC Milan at the weekend.
- The Spanish Champions have failed to win 4 of their last 6 in all competitions
- Barca have failed to keep a clean sheet in 8 of their last 9 in all competitions
Galatasaray v Schalke
- Galatasaray have something of an injury crisis at the moment Akbaba(AM), Onyekuru(LW), Fernando(DM), Aziz (CB), and Feghouli (LW) are all out injured.
- Schalke will be missing Naldo at CB which is significant
- The Turkish side have failed to win any of their last 7 home meetings against Bundesliga sides
- Schalke have won 3 of their last 4 in all competitions but still look very poor this season.
- In their opener with Porto, they were outplayed but managed a 1-1 and then away to Lokomotiv the created very little but managed to scrape a 1-0 win thanks to a late Weston Mckennie header.
- Schalke have the 2nd worst goalscoring record in the Bundesliga but a reasonably good defensive record giving up just 8.97 xGA in the Bundesliga
- Only Red Star Belgrade and Club Brugge have worse xG numbers in Europe this season.
- A draw isn’t exactly the worst result in this game, expect goals to be at a premium as these two fight out an ugly contest
Liverpool v Red Star
- Liverpool without Keita and Henderson in midfield. Shaqiri and Fabinho are both likely to get starts
- Starters Rodic, Marin, and Cafu all out injured for Red Star
- Red Star got blown out by PSG in the last round which was a surprise considering they had managed to keep things so tight in previous European games. An investigation has been opened into that game for alleged match-fixing.
- With a game against Cardiff on Saturday Klopp could use this game to rotate his squad a little, especially if Liverpool take control early
- The Serbs will have no travelling support as their fans are banned because of crowd trouble.
- Red Star’s last trip to England seen them draw 0-0 with Arsenal
- Red Star are confident that they won’t see a repeat of what happened in Paris (6-1) and feel ready for Liverpool as they play a similar style to PSG.
- Under Klopp Liverpool have seen an average of 4.4 goals per game at Anfield in the Champions League
Lokomotiv v Porto
- Porto are without Aboubakar which weakens them in attack
- Lokomotiv without Corluka, Rybus, Farfan, Smolov, Eder and Kolomeytsev.
- With Lokomotiv rock bottom on zero points, we may see them play slightly riskier as a win here is needed to get back on track.
- Porto have not travelled well in the UCL recently with only 1 win in 7
- Although Porto may only be third in Liga NOS they are leading both the xG and xGA tables
- Porto have 7+ hours travel time to Moscow
- The last 4 times Porto have travelled to either Russia or Ukraine in the UCL they’ve failed to win ( 4 draws)
- With the position Porto are in right now we should expect a cautious approach, a draw isn’t a terrible result
- Conditions for game time are expected to be cold and wet
Paris St Germain v Napoli
- Insigne a doubt for Napoli but could start will be at their strongest elsewhere
- After beating Liverpool Napoli are in a nice position to qualify, avoiding defeat here will be their priority
- PSG have scored 2+ goals in every competitive game under Thomas Tuchel and are on a 7 game win streak at the Parc des Princes
- The French side are only without Kurzawa and Thiago Santos
- Since taking charge of Napoli Ancelotti is unbeaten in 9 of 11 games in all competitions
- Napoli have won on three of their five trips to France
- PSG have won only 2 of their last 8 games in the UCL against teams from a “Top 5” league (Bayern Munich and Barcelona)
- Napoli boast the best xGA (expected goals against) in the tournament so far and held last season’s record-breaking Liverpool attack in check on the last matchday
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