Man Utd v PSG
The first of our Feb 12-13 Champions League betting tips is for Man Utd v PSG. Champions League football returns to our screens in midweek with four fixtures split evenly between Tuesday 12 and Wednesday 13 February. Each of the round of 16 ties will be shown live on BT Sport from 8.00pm and it promises to be a feast of top football for both armchair fans and punters. With home teams looking to stick their noses in front in the two-leg fixtures, while those in the away dressing room are desperate to keep things tight, we have all the ingredients for another classic night from European football’s premier competition.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has enjoyed a fantastic start to his time as caretaker manager of Manchester United and he’ll hope he can do enough to win the post full-time; however, in order to give himself the best chance of getting the nod, he must nail down a top-four finish in the Premier League and find a way into the latter stages of this tournament. The Red Devils went on a winning run since Ole’s appointment, beating the likes of Newcastle and Tottenham without conceding a goal. This will prove a much tougher test and bookmakers have the locals Man U as second-favourites in the match betting market, 8/5 available on the home cheer with Bet365. In what will be a 50/50 match-up, we’ve got to take a bite of that.
Parisians Looking to Score
PSG travel to Manchester with the support of bookmakers and they’ll see this as a perfect time to take on the English club, given the amount of uncertainty that remains in the dressing room following Jose Mourinho’s exit. The visitors will fancy themselves good enough to finish this match off at the earliest opportunity, gaining an advantage in England before seeing things out on their own patch. They are one of the pre-season favourites to win the title outright, after all.
Domestically, PSG is on their usual winning run and have already established themselves at the top of Ligue 1 with the title looking in the bag, even at this stage of the campaign. They won 18 and drew two of their first 20 league matches, scored 66 goals and conceded just 11. What’s more, they are a talented side with money in the bank, an embarrassment of skill in the squad and feel they have a point to prove after misfiring in this competition last year. Unai Emery bit the bullet as a result and the board will have no problems wielding the axe again this summer if they don’t think they are getting value for money from their employees. The away win is 28/17 – top price at Unibet – with a draw going 11/4.
Roma v Porto
Serie A giants Roma get the home advantage over Porto in the first leg and there’s every reason to expect them to put it to good use. The home side has been solid in the early exchanges of 2019 and enjoyed an unbeaten run which included wins over Virtus Entella in the Coppa Italia and Torino in the league. The latter ended 3-2, the points achieved thanks to goals from Zaniolo, Kolarov and El Shaarawy, taking their tally to 10 goals in their first three starts.
There’s no doubting their firepower; however, its performances at the opposite end of the park that must improve if they are to have any chance of going deep into this tournament. They leaked two against Torino and then another three when away to Atalanta. At this level, even the smallest of mistakes are punished to the max and any lapses in concentration at the back could see them dumped out of the tie before they get going. Both teams to score will net you 7/10 with Coral – perfect for your accumulators – the home win 21/20 with the same firm.
Porto Out in Front
Porto carries the confidence that comes with a strong league campaign and they board a flight to Italy having won 15 of their first 18 in the Primeira Liga, easing them to the top of the division. Benfica and Sporting Braga continue to nip away at their heels; however, that has ensured they’ve remained focussed, fit and determined during the winter months. Another big performance is required if they are to get anything out of this trip, but it’s by no means beyond them.
The Portuguese side was particularly impressive recently when beating Chaves 4-1 away from home. Although this sport is all about levels, that effort proves they are just as capable of turning on the style away from the comforts of their own stadium as they are performing with the backing of their fans. They’ll know an away goal will give their chances a serious boost; however, bookies offer 11/4 (Bet365) on the upset. That’s big, but not quite big enough to sway us.
Our Tip: BTTS – 7/10 at Coral
Ajax v Real Madrid
Game of the day on Wednesday and, arguably, one of the standout fixtures of the entire round. The pride of Dutch football takes on a Spanish side setting records at this level and a defending champion many fancy to keep hold of their crown. Ajax has a real challenge on their hands; however, they know Blancos aren’t the side they were last season and will aim to hit them hard in Holland and keep the tie alive heading across to Spain. To achieve that they have to score and, probably, should be winning too. A bit of a cushion certainly wouldn’t harm their chances.
Easier said than done, of course; however, there’s a steely belief in this Ajax side and they have the skill and passion, especially with the backing of vocal support, to make life difficult for their rivals. Ajax has been marked up as 13/5 second-favourites with Bet365 and although that may seem a little harsh, it’s an opinion shared by most traders. The draw has been scored out as a 14/5 outsider by Ladbrokes and that wouldn’t be the worst bet.
Blancos Have a Point to Prove
They may be defending champions and viewed as one of the best sides of their generation, but Real Madrid has a bit of a point to prove to their fans. European domination has been nice, but it has come at the expense of their domestic form and they’ll miss out on the chance to contest the La Liga title again this term, handing the trophy on a plate to bitter rivals Barcelona. With that in the minds of fans, a big push at winning another Champions League medal is needed.
The betting has Madrid as favourites for the win in this first leg and backers will be forced to take them at odds-on. There’s not too much better than Coral’s 10/11 at the time of writing and that’s an opinion shared by trading floors across the board. We’re after a bit more of a price and will chance our luck on the draw, with Madrid going through on aggregate.
Tottenham v Borussia Dortmund
The last of our Feb 12-13 Champions League betting tips is Tottenham v Borussia Dortmund. Few expected Tottenham to be involved at this stage of the Champions League; however, they upset critics to blast their way through a tricky group. They will now set their sights on shutting down the doubters when walking out for one of the biggest nights in the club’s history. Wembley will be packed to the rafters and on form, Spurs will aim to build on the atmosphere to dent their opponents early. It’ll be a case of hitting them first and hit them hard, as we expect the winner of this match will go through.
Tottenham have had a few important players out injured so far this year but will need the likes of Harry Kane back and firing if they are to perform to their best of their abilities. On paper, Tottenham is more than good enough to win this, but we’ll need to see their A Game. Backers will get 13/10 at Unibet on the home win and that will do for us.
Dortmund to Keep it Tight
Dortmund will set-up to frustrate the home support and any murmurs of disapproval heard in the first-half will be music to their ears. They are in the position of not having to score, as long as they keep their opponents at bay and a 0-0 here would be a massive result, although not quite as big as if they landed a 1-1. You can punt the draw at 12/5 with Ladbrokes.
Lucien Favre’s men are top of the Bundesliga at the time of writing and have spun off 15 wins and three draws against just one defeat. That will catch the eye of Pochettino who looks to hamper an attack with 50 goals on the board from 19 league matches. Any mistakes made by Spurs will be punished, that’s for sure. Fancy the upset? We wouldn’t put anyone off, especially with Bet365 dealing out a market best price of 11/5 for a Dortmund win. There’s more than enough there to entertain the value hunters amongst us.