Champions League Betting Tips

The UEFA Champions League is known amongst football fans as the number one club competition in the world. It's also one of the most popular competitions in football to bet on...

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History – The Best in the Business

Here are our top Champions League betting tips.  In its earlier form, the Champions League was designed to pit the champions of each of Europe’s best divisions against each other to find an overall ruler, but the modern version includes anything up to the top four finishing clubs from major divisions.

Surprisingly, English side Wolverhampton Wanderers played a part in the creation of a continent-wide tournament when boasting to be the best club in the world following a run of friendly victories. That got people thinking and indeed debating who was the premier football team in Europe. UEFA acted on the interest and put together the European Champions Club Cup in 1955.

The first instalment had 16 teams, including Milan, Anderlecht, Hibs, Real Madrid and it was the latter who were to write their names into the history books as the first-ever champions, Blancos beating Stade de Reims 4-3 in a thriller played at Parc des Princes in Paris.

Scottish Premiership side Celtic famously won the trophy in 1967 and were runners up again in 1970. Spain is the tournament’s most successful nation at present, followed by England, Italy, Germany and Holland.

Format – Qualifying Gets Started in July

The format of the Champions League has changed somewhat over the years, starting with a straight knockout competition before qualifiers, groups and knockout rounds were added as the number of participants grew to match popularity. Qualifying usually gets started in early July but the group stages are when things get serious.

32 teams are divided by eight groups of four, organised by Group A to Group H. In the mini-leagues we see each team play each of the three others twice, once at home and once at the stadium of their opponents. After six games played the club finishing with the most points progresses to the knock-out round as champions, followed by the team who ended second. Those finding themselves in third place have the consolation of being dropped into the Europa League, fourth ending all involvement in European football for the remainder of that season.

Then comes the round of 16, consisting of eight group winners vs eight group runners up and those matches are played over two legs. The aggregate winner at the end of the home and away matches going through to the last eight and the Champions League continues in this format until we are left with just two teams. They face-off in a straight final played over 90 minutes at a neutral venue.

Facts – Top Scorers and Most Appearances

The modern debate between football fans is which player is better – Ronaldo and Messi? We find both men at the top of the Champions League goalscorer charts. Cristiano Ronaldo led the way at the end of the 2018/19 campaign with stats of 126 goals in 162 appearances. That’s an average of 0.78 goals per game and he has represented three sides in Man Utd, Real Madrid and Juventus.

Nearest rival Lionel Messi has registered 112 goals in 135 games since making his debut back in 2005 and the Argentine has played for only Barcelona to date. Will he ever claw back the difference and push himself into the number one slot? It’s a big ask, of course, but football fans know it’s never wise to write off Messi.

Other names in the frame to the Champions League top scorer are Karim Benzema who netted 60 for Lyon and Real Madrid, Ruud van Nistelrooy with 56 in 73 between 1998 and 2009 and Robert Lewandowski on 53 goals from 80 appearances for Borussia Dortmund and Bayern Munich. At present no Englishman enjoys a top-10 ranking.

In terms of appearances, Spain’s Iker Casillas is top of the tree, having played no less than 177 times in the Champions League since making his debut in 1999. He has played for both Real Madrid and Porto. Casillas has Ronaldo for company with CR7 already having 162 games under his belt. It’s likely he’ll close the gap, playing for Juventus giving him a great chance. Xavi is third on 151 before Ryan Giggs comes in as the highest-ranking British player on 145. That was achieved between 1993 and 2014 for Manchester United.

Where to Bet on the Champions League

Champions League betting is big business and incredibly popular with punters. The qualifying rounds are seen as an early chance to gamble on club football following the summer drought and interest grows as the tournament gathers pace towards the final, punters eager to back their Champions League predictions with cash.

The group stages of the Champions League is particularly popular as it gives backers the chance to create accumulators, targeting a nice pay-out for small stakes. Bet365 ranks as one of the best online bookmakers to bet on the Champions League with over 100 markets available on each and every fixture. William Hill, Ladbrokes and 888Sport offer great alternatives.

Punters can have their say on the winner of each match or play one of the many exciting specials, including both teams to score, total goals, half time/full time, first goalscorer, correct score and Asian handicap. Many of the most popular pre-match markets remain live throughout the course of the action thanks to in-play betting, meaning you can get involved at any stage of the 90 minutes.

Champions League Betting Tips

You can also bet ante-post, calling the outright winner of the Champions League. Betting on the Champions League top scorer is another option that will hold your interest from game one of the group stage through to the final.

There’s no lack of Champions League betting tips either and our team of experts aim to guide you towards profit by previewing the fixtures of note from the qualifiers through to the final. We do the necessary research before reporting back on our Champions League best bets and the bookmakers offering the best prices.

The UEFA Champions League remains the most popular club competition in world football and it’s made all the more enjoyable with a winning bet.