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Champions League Tips – 10th & 11th December
by David Lenton
We had our first loss in a while at the weekend but it was only £8.50 from £10 stakes so nothing too damaging.
Lets hope we can claw that back and some in the Champions League this week.
It’s the final round of matches in the Group Stages and so far eight teams have been confirmed as progressing into the next stage of the tournament.
That leaves eight more places in the Round of 16 to be decided in this next set of games.
The qualification situation makes things a little trickier as some sides may well elect to rest several key players for their final group game, especially if they have already secured top spot in the group.
As such, I have tried to factor in the potential for this to happen in my selections for this week’s games, and I have tried to focus on those matches that still have at least something, even if it is just top position in the group, still to play for.
Champions League Tips: Tuesday 10th December
December 10, 2019
Red Bull Arena
December 10, 2019
Red Bull Arena
A draw for Liverpool will see them to qualify. A win sees them top the group.
Salzburg need to beat Liverpool by two clear goals, if Napoli beat Genk.
Liverpool can recall the domestically suspended Alisson in goal for this game.
Liverpool defeated Salzburg 4-3 on Matchday 2 of the Group Stages at Anfield.
After being held to a draw by Napoli by Anfield in their last game, Liverpool now need to avoid defeat to qualify, or win to finish top of Group E. However, they face a Red Bull Salzburg side that have scored goals for fun in this tournament and who in Erling Braut Haaland, have one of the most sought after young strikers in world football today.
Salzburg came back fro 3-0 down to be drawing 3-3 at Anfield before Salah’s late goal snatched the win and given the rate at which they score goals, and Liverpool concede, it looks likely the home side will find the net at least once in the evening.
The problem they have is keeping Liverpool’s talented attackers quiet and few teams have managed to do that this season. Alisson’s availability will be a big relief for this game as though he is suspended domestically, he can play in this game for the Reds.
This should be a cracking game and I can see plenty of goals at both ends. Indeed a 3-2 or even 4-3 scoreline would not surprise me, but I am backing Liverpool’s better quality in depth to be the difference maker here.
Liverpool to win & both teams to score - £10 returns £28.80
Ajax need a draw or better, or Chelsea to lose, to progress to the next phase.
Valencia progress with a win, or if they finish level on points with Chelsea.
Ajax defeated Valencia 3-0 in Spain in the first match between these two teams.
The teams have met 3 times previously, Ajax winning once with two draws.
Ajax would start this game as the clear favourites for three very good reasons, firstly, they thumped Valencia 3-0 at the Mestalla back on Matchday 2, secondly they are at home and lastly, their record in this competition in recent times is much, much better than that of the Spanish team.
That said, it should be noted that Ajax’s record at home in Europe over the last few years has not been as strong as on the road. It was their away performances that shone in the Champions League last season, and to an extent this, which will give Valencia some hope of an upset win here.
The Spanish side are not in the greatest of form heading into this game, but they are more than capable of creating chances and playing on the counterattack will suit them and as we have seen, Ajax can have some problems playing at home.
The Dutch side won’t want this to go down to the deeper mathematics to decide who goes through though and I feel they have the quality to get the job done here, though I do feel Valencia will likely grab a goal on the counter to keep things very interesting.
Ajax to win & both teams to score - £10 returns £28.80
City have already qualified from Group C as the winners and cannot be caught.
Zagreb go through if they beat City and Shakhtar do not beat Atalanta.
It is likely that Manchester City will rest a number of key first teamers for this game.
The teams have met just once before, on Matchday 2, with City winning 2-0 at the Etihad.
The bookies seem to think that this game is a nailed on Manchester City win, but having seen them play somewhat poorly away to Atalanta, and knowing that Pep Guardiola will likely give a couple of his key men a rest for this game, I think this is a game Zagreb will feel they could cause an upset in.
The problem with that, is that if Zagreb do try to attack to win the game, as they need to do to stand any chance of progressing, that will play into City’s hands to pick them off on the counter attack and in truth, that is exactly how I see this game progressing, until City are a couple of goals up at least after which I expect Zagreb to go into damage limitation mode.
Even if Guardiola does rest a number of his key men ahead of a busy festive season of fixtures, the replacements City have are more than good enough to go and get a result here. Many don’t feel Zagreb will score, but I feel City look susceptible in defence and I do feel that the Croatian side will get a goal, but ultimately City will win the game comfortably.
Man City to win & both teams to score - £10 returns £31.00
Juventus already qualify from Group D as the winners of the group.
Leverkusen need Atletico to lose or draw and for them to beat Juve to qualify.
Juventus were commanding 3-0 winners over Leverkusen on Matchday 2.
They met in the Champions League in 2001/02, winning one game apiece back then.
With Juventus already qualified for the next phase of the tournament, the Italians can afford to rest some key players for this game and I feel Mauricio Sarri is likely to do that, especially with a tough looking battle in Serie A with Inter looming for the title.
However, Juventus squad is so packed with talent that even if Ronaldo is rested for example, the likes of Dybala can come in to replace him, so even if Juventus do rest players, they will still be a formidable obstacle for the German side to overcome.
Leverkusen seemed dead and buried in this group until two wins in their last two games over Moscow and Madrid have given them at least a fighting chance. They need to win here and Madrid not to win at home to Moscow, but in truth, I think their chances of winning at home to Juventus are slim.
That said, I think the Germans will keep battling and they have shown enough quality to suggest that they can get a point from this game. As such, I am going for an entertaining 1-1 draw on the night.
David 'the Cheeky Punter' Lenton is an ex professional online sports bettor and trader with over 15 years of experience in the industry. He has also worked for a number of top bookmakers including Bet365, Ladbrokes, William Hill and Coral. With such a long time spent dedicated to the gambling industry no one is better placed when it comes to advising punters. Follow on Twitter @thecheekypunter