Champions League Best Bets – April 17th
The final two games of the Champions League quarterfinals take place on Wednesday and after today’s results we will have the final two semifinalists. Liverpool travel to Portugal to face Porto and Tottenham head to Manchester to face City. Liverpool won the first leg of this matchup 2-0, but Porto is a great team at home, so this is far from over. Tottenham got a 1-0 win over Manchester City, in the first let, but lost Harry Kane to injury and will have a tough task trying to hold off City in the second leg.
Here are my picks for the final two quarterfinal Champions League matchups.
FC Porto (+275) vs Liverpool (+104) – Draw +225)
Liverpool will look to advance to their second consecutive Champions League semifinal as they head to Portugal with a 2-0 lead. Liverpool haven’t lost on the road since January and beat Bayern Munich on the road to advance to the quarterfinal stage. FC Porto have been on a tear at home lately winning six of seven games and winning all six of the affairs by at least two goals. If Porto get out to an early lead it could make Liverpool uncomfortable, but I think the Liverpool defense is too strong and they escape with a draw. Take a draw in this one with Liverpool advancing to the semifinals.
Manchester City (-357) vs Tottenham (+900) – Draw +475
Manchester City were on a 14 match win streak heading into Leg One of this quarterfinal matchup, but it was Tottenham that prevailed and came away with a 1-0 home victory. However, the victory was overshadowed by a Harry Kane injury that appears to be season ending. It is going to be a tough task for Tottenham to keep Manchester City off the scoresheet, so they will need to find goals with Kane out. Spurs found four goals this past weekend, without him, and will look to ride their three match win streak into a Champions League semifinal appearance. City have not lost at home since December and I see that streak continuing, so take Manchester City to win and to advance to the semifinals.
YTD Soccer Results: 32-31
Champions League Best Bets – April 16th
The 2nd leg of the Champions League quarterfinals get underway Tuesday with two matchups still up in the air. Ajax travel to Juventus while Barcelona welcome Manchester United to Camp Nou. Ajax and Juventus played to a 1-1- draw, in the first leg, with Ajax looking like the better team, but Juventus getting an away goal could be the difference here. Barcelona went into Old Trafford and came away with a big 1-0 road win. Barcelona dominated possession, and held United to no shots on goal, but could only get on the scoresheet thanks to an own goal. Barcelona is very injured right now, so who plays, and doesn’t plays, could determine the outcome of this one.
We will have our first two semifinalists, after Tuesday’s action, and here are my best bets for both games.
Juventus (-164) vs Ajax (+450) – Draw +275
All is in the balance as Ajax travel to Turin to face to Juventus Tuesday night. Juventus are lucky to have left Amsterdam with a 1-1 draw and a huge away goal. It looks like Juventus will be getting Emre Can and Giorgio Chiellini back from injury, which is huge, but perhaps the biggest news is the injury to Frenkie De Jong over the weekend. De Jong had to be taken off the field this past weekend with a hamstring injury and his status is in serious doubt for this. Ajax won’t be scared in this one as they went in and dominated Real Madrid, in Madrid, to get to this stage, but I like Juventus to win and advance to the semifinals.
Barcelona (-278) vs Manchester United (+750) – Draw +375
Barcelona are in good position heading into the second leg as they were able to grab a 1-0 road win in leg one of this matchup. Between Barcelona’s great home form, and Manchester United not playing well the last few weeks, this one should be done and dusted, but injuries could play a role in this one. Messi suffered a face injury in the first leg and his status is unknown for the second leg, so if he is out that could be uplifting for a United side who went into Paris and knocked out PSG in the Round of 16. No matter who is playing for Barcelona I still fancy their chances here, so take Barcelona to win and advance to the semis.
YTD Soccer Results: 32-31
Champions League Best Bets – April 10th
The quarterfinals of the Champions League will conclude the first legs on Wednesday with two great matchups. Ajax welcome Juventus to Amsterdam while Barcelona head to Old Trafford for a matchup with Manchester United. Ajax are currently atop the Eredivisie, but are tied with PSV on 71 points. Juventus are just one point away from wrapping up Serie A as they are currently 20 points up on second place Napoli. Barcelona most likely wrapped up La Liga this past weekend as they now currently sit 11 points up on second place Atletico Madrid. Manchester United are currently in poor form and are sitting in sixth place in the Premier League, but are just three points out of third place.
It should be another exciting day of games, so here are my best bets in each game.
Ajax (+240) vs Juventus (+129) – Draw +240
Ajax are currently on a 9-2 run and have really been killing every opponent they have faced, including that 4-1 road win at Real Madrid to send Ajax through to the quarterfinals. At home Ajax are 7-1-2 with the lone loss coming against Real Madrid in the first leg of their Round of 16 affair. Ajax have never beaten Juventus, but with a group of young studs, and potentially not having to deal with Cristiano Ronaldo, Ajax have as good a shot as ever. Juventus have basically wrapped up Serie A and are in incredible form at the moment. Have dropped just two out of their last ten games, Juve have advanced to the quarters of the Champions League and increased their league lead to 20 points. On the road Juve have had mixed results, going 6-3-1, but I see Juve leaving Amsterdam with a huge road win.
Manchester United (+280) vs Barcelona (+100) – Draw +275
Manchester United have seen a dip in form recently, losing three out of their last four, and Barcelona coming to town is not the medicine they needed. United are just 5-4-1 and in their last ten games and really need to pick up their form if they want to stay in this year’s Champions League, but also make next years. A home form is a bit better, for United, as they have lost just once while getting seven win and two draws. Barcelona are unbeaten in their 16 games and all but wrapped up the La Liga title with a 2-0 win over Atletico this past weekend. On the road Barcelona have been impressive as they are currently on an eight match unbeaten streak and have gotten five wins during that stretch. I think Manchester United snap out of their poor form and win this one on Thursday.
YTD Soccer Results: 32-31
The quarterfinals of the Champions League are finally here and there are two great matchups to get us started on Tuesday. Liverpool welcome Porto to Anfield and Tottenham face off against Man City, in North London, in the first two quarterfinal matchups this week. Liverpool are currently atop the Premier League two points up on Manchester City who have a game in hand. Tottenham sit in third place, but are just one point ahead of Arsenal and Chelsea and are just three points up on Manchester United. Porto are currently in second place in the Portugal Primeira Liga, due to goal difference, and are tied at the top with Benfica.
It should be an exciting round of matchups and here are my best bets in each game.
Liverpool (-357) vs Porto (+1,000) – Draw +550
Liverpool haven’t lost a match in more than three months and will look to build on their five consecutive wins. In their last 15 games Liverpool have compiled nine wins, one loss and five draws. At home Liverpool haven’t lost since September and in their last 15 home games they have 13 wins and two draws. It is going to be an uphill battle for Porto, but they are no slouch themselves. In their last 15 matches they also have nine wins, but do have three losses and three draws. On the road Porto have been very impressive winning 10, lost just once and getting four draws in their last 15. Porto has never beaten Liverpool, but did get a draw at Anfield in last season’s Round of 16. Liverpool are too much for Porto and they win 3-0.
Tottenham (+320) vs Manchester City (-111) – Draw +280
Tottenham have finally moved into their new stadium and the place will be rocking for the first leg of their Champions League quarterfinal. Spurs opened their new stadium, on Saturday, with a 2-0 win over Crystal Palace and ended a two game losing streak. Spurs are not in the best of form at the moment as they have just seven wins and seven loses with one draw in there. At home, with matches played in Wembley, Spurs went 11-3-1 before moving into their new home. Their task at hand on Tuesday will be Manchester City who are still alive for the quadruple – winning the Champions League, Premier League, FA Cup and the EFL Cup. City are currently on a 14 game win streak and have not allowed a goal in four of their last five matches. On the road, in their last 15, City have gone 12-3 and are currently on a seven match winning streak. Tottenham haven’t beat City since 2016 and I see that continuing Tuesday, but with a 2-2 draw.
YTD Soccer Results: 31-30