The UEFA Champions League is arguably the most prestigious competition in the world. Having 32 of the best teams in Europe battling for the top honours is a sure treat for fans worldwide. This season’s tourney has the usual suspects tipped to make it all the way. Defending champions Liverpool, English champions Manchester City, Barcelona, Bayern Munich are all favorites to win it.
Historically, the Champions League has brought us some of the best football memories in the world. Picture the 2005 final when the Steven Gerrard-led Liverpool overcame a 3-0 deficit against AC Milanit to score three and eventually win the trophy. What about in 2017 when Barcelona shocked the world by overturning a 4-0 first leg deficit against PSG to thump the French champions 6-1.
The 2019/2020 season has already given us some cracking results. The UEFA Champions League has traditionally offered value for football punters. Who knew that last season’s finalists, Tottenham Hotspur, would lose by seven goals in their backyard? Many believe that the competition proper starts in the knockout phase. After three rounds of group matches, there are no red flags to indicate that any of the favorites would fail to qualify.
Juve and Atletico are dark horses
In any competition, there are dark horses. Matchbook has Juventus at 68/5 to win the Champions League and Atletico Madrid at 25.00. Both teams are in Group D are favorites to advance to the last 16. After a disappointing run that ended at the quarter final stage last season, the Old Lady have strengthened in summer by bringing on the linkedin of Aaron Ramsey, Matthijs de Ligt and Adrien Rabiot. Talismanic Cristiano is tipped to be their top scorer by SkyBet at 10.00.
At the moment, we are heading to Match day 4 where teams such as PSG will secure qualification into the last 16 if they beat Club Brugge. The biggest match up pits Europa League champions Chelsea against last season’s UCL semi finalists Ajax. The Blues won the first leg 1-0 in Amsterdam and Frank Lampard’s youthful team know that a win will put them one foot into the last 16. LVBet have an offer for new customers which has a maximum stake of stake £1. They have 30/1 Chelsea to beat Ajax. If the bet is won, winnings will be enhanced to the equivalent of 30/1 with cash. Ajax have been tipped to win at 3.50. As you test your gaming ability against the fixed odds in this one, compare betting welcome offers for new and existing customers. According to the bookies at Bet365, they have tipped Chelsea to win at 2.00.
Which team will win the Champions League?
William Hill has tipped the following teams to win as outlined below:
These are realistically the top clubs to win the 2019/2020 Champions League due to their pedigree in the competition and how their season is shaping up already. All these teams are in prime position to advance from their respective groups. Manchester City seem to have a more balanced squad which can cope with injury problems. As of their 3-1 win over Southampton, the English Champions had already scored 48 goals in all competitions.
Liverpool are as good as their starters and this is narrowed down to their front three of Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino. Losing any of those and Salah in particular makes the team vulnerable which will be futile especially in the knockout stages. In the 2018 final, Liverpool lost the Egyptian international early in the match and their mental strength was broken to eventually lose to Real Madrid.
Barcelona are also favourites this season to go all the way. Their last five campaigns are outlined below:
Barca’s UCL performance since 2015
Their attacking prowess has been boosted by the arrival of Antoine Griezmann who adds on to an already impressive front three that has Luiz Suarez and arguably the best player in history; Lionel Messi. Griezmann is seen as the marquee signing that will get the Catalans over the line having not won the trophy in four seasons. Just like Liverpool, Barcelona will heavily rely on Messi to do things only Messi can do if the Spanish champions are to be crowned European kings once more.
This season, all the top teams will have to be at their best if they are to win. Football is a game of fine margins and at this elite level, even the simplest of mistakes can go punished. Only time will tell. Which team has what it takes to win the 26th edition of the premier European club competition?
Image by David Mark