Man City, Bayern Munich & Real Madrid: Champions League preview

Man City, Bayern Munich & Real Madrid: Champions League preview

Soccer

Man City, Bayern Munich & Real Madrid: Champions League preview

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The Champions League continues this week as another eight teams are in action around Europe.

Last week, Paris Saint-Germain pulled off a stunning 4-1 thrashing of Barcelona at Camp Nou, whilst FC Porto were surprising 2-1 winners at home to FC Porto. In the other two ties, Liverpool won 2-0 in their away leg versus RB Leipzig, and Borussia Dortmund won a shootout 3-2 at Sevilla.

Here’s a look at this week’s four Round of 16 ties:

Atletico Madrid vs Chelsea

Jul 31, 2019; Orlando, FL, USA; Atletico Madrid forward Diego Costa (19) celebrates with forward Joao Felix (middle) and forward Ivan Saponjic (17) after scoring a goal against the MLS All Stars during the second half of the 2019 MLS All Star Game at Exploria Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Chelsea continued their unbeaten start under Thomas Tuchel with a 1-1 draw away to Southampton on Saturday but face a stern test in the Spanish capital midweek.

Atletico Madrid are the La Liga leaders but were surprisingly beaten 0-2 at home by Levante this past weekend. Diego Simeone’s side may have had an eye on the visit of Chelsea on Tuesday to explain their performance.

Research from Betway shows that Chelsea are amongst the top spenders in their bid to win the Champions League, and if this tie was about who has spent the most money, Chelsea would be comfortable winners. 

However, form matters more than money spent and with a solid defence and Luis Suarez on fire this season, we have to favour the Spanish team winning this tie, which starts with the first leg. 

Prediction: Atletico Madrid to win is 6/4. 

Lazio vs Bayern Munich

Defending champions Bayern Munich go to Lazio in the first leg of their Round of 16 tie on Tuesday. The Bavarians are coming off the back of a surprise defeat away to Eintracht Frankfurt in the Bundesliga over the weekend, but qualification is expected from this tie.

The Rome side have been on good form domestically and they are only narrowly outside of the top four. Lazio did go unbeaten in the Group Stage, but four of their six results were draws.

Lazio have failed to keep a clean sheet in the Champions League this season and have shipped 30 goals in 23 Serie A games. Their fragility at the back will be a huge problem when coming up against Robert Lewandowski, Serge Gnabry, Leroy Sane and co.

Prediction: Bayern Munich to win and Both Teams to Score is 9/5

Atalanta vs Real Madrid

Atalanta progressed further in the 2019-20 Champions League than Real Madrid as the Spanish giants were eliminated by Manchester City at this stage last season.

Zinedine Zidane’s side have got back into the La Liga title race with four consecutive victories, keeping a clean sheet in three of them. Scoring has been the issue for Madrid this season however, with Karim Benzema the only player scoring more than once in the group stage.

Atalanta were a surprise package in last season’s competition, reaching the quarter-finals. They made it to the knockout stage for a second straight season courtesy of a win away to Ajax in their final group game.

The Italian side have been largely inconsistent this season but a 4-2 win over Napoli at the weekend shows what they’re capable of. We expect this to be a tight tie.

Prediction: Under 2.5 Goals is 13/10

Borussia Monchengladbach vs Manchester City

Jul 28, 2018; Miami, FL, USA; Manchester City goalkeeper Claudio Bravo (1) makes a save during the second half of an International Champions Cup soccer match against the Bayern Munich at Hard Rock Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

Manchester City are the in-form team across Europe right now and the bookmakers’ team to beat as the Champions League co-favourites, alongside Bayern Munich.

Pep Guardiola’s side are on an 18-game winning streak in all competitions, including 13 in a row in the Premier League, opening up a 10-point lead at the top.

Ruben Dias has been a great signing, almost single-handedly fixing the defence that was an issue last campaign. Scoring goals is certainly not a problem for them – Raheem Sterling, Sergio Aguero, Phil Foden, Kevin De Bruyne, Riyad Mahrez and Bernardo Silva all available to the boss.

Borussia Monchengladbach are winless in their last four Bundesliga matches, including 1-2 losses at home to both struggling FC Koln and Mainz 05. Whilst it was impressive to progress from their group that included Internazionale and Shakhtar Donetsk, their only two wins came against the latter.

Prediction: Manchester City to win is 4/11 

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