After a 149-day wait, Champions League betting returns with huge fixtures among European football’s elite. Manchester City take on Real Madrid at the Etihad, while Juventus look to overturn Lyon at the Allianz Stadium.
With some of the greatest teams in the world set to lock horns, join us as we analyse exciting betting options for second leg fixtures of the round of 16.
Juventus have once again established themselves as the dominant force in Italian football, ending the season with their ninth Serie A Scudetto in a row. Although they finished their campaign just one point above their nearest rivals, Juventus found the time to rest key players during their final fixtures – with their attention already fixed on the Champions League.
The Bianconeri head into their Friday fixture in desperate need of goals; their 1-0 away loss in the first leg left them bloodied but not yet beaten. Having shown no signs of slowing down, Cristiano Ronaldo will lead the line and look to add to his already impressive tally of 35 goals, with his chances of scoring calculated at 7/12 (1.58).
Sarri’s men will take nothing for granted this Friday, but they can take confidence from their incredible win record at home which has solidified their reputation as an exceptional team and established the Allianz Stadium as a fortress.
Lyon attained their first-ever victory over the Italian champions last February courtesy of a left-footed effort by Lucas Tousart – upsetting the pre-match predictions and stunning both fans and pundits alike.
With the Ligue 1 season cut short due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Les Gones have enjoyed a long break which has allowed attacking talismans Memphis Depay and Jeff Reine-Adelaide to recover from long-term knee injuries and possibly make the starting lineup this Friday.
Knowing that a clean sheet will see them through, but an away goal could make all the difference, Rudi Garcia may set his team up similarly to their Coupe de la Ligue final blueprint from last week. Having withstood a Paris Saint-Germain onslaught for 120 minutes, Lyon may look to emulate their counter-attacking strategy against the Italian champs and make use of their fast-breaking strikeforce to possibly clinch a historic result.
Juventus come out as strong favourites, at 3/7 (1.43) to win, while Lyon sport odds of 33/5 (7.60) to once again upset the Italian champions.
Although they have secured silverware in the EFL Cup, disappointment in the Premier League and FA Cup has left Manchester City looking towards the Champions League as a way to finish their season with a bang.
The Citizens go into their fixture this Friday with a 2-1 advantage, having dismantled Real Madrid at the Santiago Bernabéu Stadium – courtesy of goals from Gabriel Jesus and Kevin De Bruyne. City will face an entirely different beast this Friday, with the freshly-crowned La Liga champions the form team in Europe (alongside Bayern Munich) since the resumption of domestic action. Guardiola will be focused on shoring up a defence which has been guilty of costly errors on several occasions this season.
With Sergio Aguero’s ruled out of participation this Friday due to a knee injury, the pressure will be on Gabriel Jesus to deliver the goods at 10/11 (1.91) and see his side past the Spanish champions.
Almost five months have passed since this fixture was initially due to take place; the Real Madrid team that visits the Etihad now is a different proposition to that from the first leg.
A disappointing 2-1 loss at home, which also saw the red card dismissal of their talismanic captain Sergio Ramos, haunts fans of Los Blancos. However, hope remains in the form of Karim Benzema and Thibaut Courtois who have both been vital in Real Madrid’s post-lockdown resurgence, leading their team from the back and front respectively.
Real Madrid will head into their fixture with the weight of their prestigious Champions League history heavy upon their shoulders. With their players knowing exactly what is expected when they put on the white shirt and represent Los Blancos, anything but a win for Zidane’s team will be deemed unacceptable.
As the home team, Manchester City are favourites, at 5/7 (1.71), to go on and win, with Real Madrid’s chances measured at 67/20 (4.35).
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*Odds subject to change. Odds correct at time of publishing.
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