The UEFA Champions League quarter-finals are upon us and the European elite will be looking to be well positioned for a place into the next round of the competition with a win.
The last eight face-offs include two heavyweights and also last years finalists Bayern Munich and PSG, while Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City will battle it out with Borussia Dortmund, Real Madrid will be facing Liverpool and lastly Porto take on rivals Chelsea.
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Manchester City vs Borussia Dortmund
Man City have been in red hot form this season domestically and also in Europe. They’ve dominated the Champions League, during group stages, they've conceded a single goal and found the net 13 times topping their group with 16 points. In the round of 16, they cruised through German side Monchengladbach; winning both legs 2-0. Now they face the North Rhine-Westphalia giants, who are making an appearance in the last eight for the first time since 2017.
Dortmund have scored 17 goals in the Champions League (same as Man City), of which approx 60 per cent have been scored by Erling Haaland. He is one of the most exciting players to emerge in recent years and will be a big threat for Man City’s defenders.
From a betting prospect, over 3.5 goals, 11/8 with Bet365, looks a solid bet to take considering the attacking style both teams possess. You may also consider taking Haaland to score anytime at odds of 11/10 with Bet365 - a price steal given his current form.
Bayern Munich vs PSG
This is a rematch of the last season’s Champions League Final with holders Bayern hosting PSG in the first leg.
Bayern Munich remain unbeaten in the competition this season to reach their 19th Champions League quarter-final appearance; a new record, with Barcelona (18 appearances) now in second. While the record is admirable, Bayern boss Hansi Flick's focus will be on how to replace top goalscorer Robert Lewandowski. The Pole has strained a ligament in his right knee and he will be out of action for approximately four weeks, missing at least this round of the tournament.
This is PSG seventh appearance in the quarter-finals. The French club annihilated Barcelona in the last-16, winning 5-1 on aggregate, and will be hoping Bayern’s defence can be troubled similarly.
Kylian Mbappe is his fourth year at the Parc des Princes, having already won every domestic honour there is. A Champions League Triumph will complete his haul as a PSG player.
This will be a close encounter, with a draw a likely outcome. However, I am leaning towards a PSG win at 12/5 with Bet365. It would be their first win at Allianz Arena, and an Mbappe to score first at 9/2 with Bet365 is an interesting option too.
Real Madrid vs Liverpool
Two of the most successful clubs meet once again after the 2018 Champions League Final, where Madrid were crowned champions for a record 13th time. Liverpool got their hands on the trophy the following year - a sixth European title, which was followed by their first top-flight Premier League title in 30 years.
Neither team have impressed this season, however, particularly the Reds. But when it comes to the Champions League, both seems to switch to a higher gear.
This is another game in which goals can be expected. Karim Benzema has scored four times in his last three appearances against Liverpool and, at 11/10 anytime with Bet365, represents another solid bet.
Porto vs Chelsea
The two sides have become regular rivals in the Champions League. Their games usually come in group stages, but now they're facing-off in the quarters. Porto haven’t won a last-eight tie since they were crowned European champions 17 years ago - under future Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho, no less.
We have to go back to 2014 when Chelsea last made an appearance at this stage, when they progressed to the semis. The Blues do, however, have an impeccable record against Porto, winning five of their eight meetings, and netting 12 goals in the process.
This game will be extremely tight and despite their head to head record, Porto are expected to play a defensive formation which could frustrate Chelsea. It’s hard to call this but I feel the Portuguese side will go through, and you can get them at 4/1 with Bet365.
Outright winner tip
The eventual winner has to be between Man City and PSG and we feel it is Man City’s year to lift the trophy for the very first time. PSG could also be worth a side bet given the odds.
Goalscorer treble tip
Haaland Anytime, Mbappe Anytime, Benzema Anytime at 8.26/1 with Bet365
Man City, Real Madrid, PSG and Porto to all go through at 20/1 with BoyleSports.
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