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    Champions League Wide Open

    05 March 2019 | Champions League | Opinion
    1156
    Champions League Wide Open
    Fotosr52 / Shutterstock.com

    As we move into the second legs of the round of 16 ties in this seasons UEFA Champions League, the winner of the tournament has become more difficult to predict.

    Real Madrid have remained the favourites to lift the trophy over the past two seasons and they have lived up to the billing. Zinedine Zidane guided Los Blancos to an unprecedented three Champions League titles in succession but left the club ahead of the current campaign.

    Things have not been going well for Real Madrid this season and under the guidance of Santiago Solari, they are all but out of contention for the Spanish title.  Having been eliminated from the Copa del Rey by Barcelona, the Champions League remains their only hope for a trophy in the 2018/19 European season.

    Many felt Real Madrid were fortunate to come away from Ajax with a 2-1 win in the first leg and they could easily have lost the game.  In the final game of the group stages, Real Madrid lost 3-0 at home to CSKA Moscow and although that was a much-changed team, Sergio Ramos will be absent from the second leg against Ajax and the first leg of the quarter-final should Real Madrid progress.

    Given the holders difficulties, this opens up the competition this season and the current favourites with the bookmakers to win the 2018/19 Champions League is Manchester City.  They are all but through to the quarter-final having defeated Schalke 3-2 away and are going for a haul of four trophies this season.

    Manchester City have the talent to win the competition but the number of important fixtures they will have to play over the next few weeks is sure to take something out of the players.  Pep Guardiola will try and deny tiredness will be an issue but the longer they remain in the Champions League, FA Cup and Premier League title race, the tougher it is going to become.

    Manchester City’s schedule could fall nicely into the hands of Barcelona. They are trying to win three trophies including the Copa del Rey and La Liga but have already reached the final of the former and have a good lead in the latter.

    The Catalan giants can afford to focus more of their attention on potential upcoming Champions League games but must take care of Lyon in the round of 16 at the Camp Nou following a 0-0 draw in France.  Do that and Barcelona will be in great shape to go all the way in the Champions League this season.

    Paris Saint-Germain have the Ligue 1 title in the bag already and with a 2-0 lead over Manchester United from the first leg of their round of 16 tie, should progress to the quarter-final. With Kylian Mbappe leading the line, PSG must be considered a serious threat this season.

    With Atletico Madrid hugely experienced in the Champions League, they will fancy their chances of success and if they finish the job against Juventus, their confidence will be brimming for the quarter-final.

    There are several teams capable of winning the Champions League this season and it is going to be a thrilling ride to the final in Madrid.

    Predictions for Champions League

    Home team - Away team Forebet
    flag_13 UCL
    Paris St. GermainGalatasaray SK
    11/12/2019 21:00
    1
    flag_13 UCL
    Club BruggeReal Madrid
    11/12/2019 21:00
    2
    flag_13 UCL
    Bayern MünchenTottenham
    11/12/2019 21:00
    1
    flag_13 UCL
    Olympiakos PireusFK Crvena Zvezda
    11/12/2019 21:00
    2

    Champions League - predictions, tips, statistics

    Featured match

    Home team - Away team Forebet
    UCL
    SSC Napoli
    Racing Genk

    10/12/2019 18:55
    1

    Group A
    OVERALL TABLE PTS GP W D L GF GA +/-
    1. Paris St. Germain 13 5 4 1 0 12 2 10
    2. Real Madrid 8 5 2 2 1 11 7 4
    3. Club Brugge 3 5 0 3 2 3 9 -6
    4. Galatasaray SK 2 5 0 2 3 1 9 -8
    Group B
    OVERALL TABLE PTS GP W D L GF GA +/-
    1. Bayern München 15 5 5 0 0 21 4 17
    2. Tottenham 10 5 3 1 1 17 11 6
    3. FK Crvena Zvezda 3 5 1 0 4 3 19 -16
    4. Olympiakos Pireus 1 5 0 1 4 7 14 -7
    Group C
    OVERALL TABLE PTS GP W D L GF GA +/-
    1. Manchester City 11 5 3 2 0 12 3 9
    2. Shakhtar Donetsk 6 5 1 3 1 8 10 -2
    3. Dinamo Zagreb 5 5 1 2 2 9 9 0
    4. Atalanta Bergamo 4 5 1 1 3 5 12 -7
    Group D
    OVERALL TABLE PTS GP W D L GF GA +/-
    1. Juventus FC 13 5 4 1 0 10 4 6
    2. Atlético Madrid 7 5 2 1 2 6 5 1
    3. Bayer Leverkusen 6 5 2 0 3 5 7 -2
    4. Lokomotiv Moscow 3 5 1 0 4 4 9 -5
    Group E
    OVERALL TABLE PTS GP W D L GF GA +/-
    1. Liverpool 10 5 3 1 1 11 8 3
    2. SSC Napoli 9 5 2 3 0 7 4 3
    3. RB Salzburg 7 5 2 1 2 16 11 5
    4. Racing Genk 1 5 0 1 4 5 16 -11
    Group F
    OVERALL TABLE PTS GP W D L GF GA +/-
    1. FC Barcelona 11 5 3 2 0 7 3 4
    2. Inter Milano 7 5 2 1 2 9 7 2
    3. Borussia Dortmund 7 5 2 1 2 6 7 -1
    4. Slavia Praha 2 5 0 2 3 3 8 -5
    Group G
    OVERALL TABLE PTS GP W D L GF GA +/-
    1. RB Leipzig 10 5 3 1 1 8 6 2
    2. Lyon 7 5 2 1 2 7 6 1
    3. Zenit 7 5 2 1 2 7 6 1
    4. SL Benfica 4 5 1 1 3 7 11 -4
    Group H
    OVERALL TABLE PTS GP W D L GF GA +/-
    1. AFC Ajax 10 5 3 1 1 12 5 7
    2. Chelsea 8 5 2 2 1 9 8 1
    3. Valencia CF 8 5 2 2 1 8 7 1
    4. Lille OSC 1 5 0 1 4 3 12 -9

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