Champions League: Best Early Bets for the Knockout Stages
The draw for the Champions League round of 16 has been made and there are some mouth watering ties for football fans to look forward to. Many believe that this is where the competition really starts and although games in the knockout stages are notoriously hard to call there are a few potential bets that stand out.
There are not many matches bigger than the ones at the business end of the Champions League – and with some of the best footballers on the planet playing for the teams involved these promise to be some passionate and tense affairs.
Atletico Madrid v Juventus, Manchester United v Paris Saint-Germain and Liverpool v Bayern Munich will be three hotly anticipated ties – and the odds for individual matches, qualifying teams and outright winner have already been adjusted to take in these new match factors.
Manchester City are still the favourites to lift the famous trophy in Madrid next June. Their odds have shortened slightly due to what will be considered a very favourable draw in Schalke. Barcelona should also make it through to the next round by beating Lyon so an outright winner bet on either of these two should probably be made sooner rather than later to get odds that still offer a little bit of value. After the draw, City are 3/1 to win the competition outright, with Barca 9/2.
Spurs seem to be the bookies favourite in their tie with Borussia Dortmund, though the Bundesliga club are top of their league and playing some excellent football this season. But it should be remembered that Spurs only sneaked through to this stage with a late equaliser against to a second string Barcelona side and a surprise draw in the Inter v PSV game – so punters should be able to get fairly attractive odds for Dortmund to qualify, coming it at 5/6.
Atletico Madrid are another side attracting good looking odds due to their match up with Italian giants Juventus. A lot will be made of Ronaldo’s return to the Spanish capital but Atletico’s defence is as miserly as they come and if they get a good first leg result they could well go through. The added incentive of playing the final in their own stadium means that they could be one of the ones to watch at around 22/1 to progress.
When it comes to top goal scorer, Lionel Messi is the bookies’ favourite at 8/5 thanks to his side’s match up with unfancied Lyon in the round of 16. But Robert Lewandowski and Edin Dzeko both look better bets at 5/2 and 17/1 respectively – although a lot hinges on whether their teams will progress. Bayern face a Liverpool side that have looked very impressive in the Premier League, if not as deadly in Europe. Roma should have the better of Porto and might fancy their chances of a few goals in the process.
Champions League Betting
With so many good teams still involved in the Champions League it can be hard to predict who will go through and progress in the competition. But there are a few bets that have begun to look interesting – and now is the time to put your money where your mouth is to get the best odds possible.