Champions League Tips – 19th & 20th October

Author: Published: October 18, 2021

Champions League TipsDue to personal commitments, I am having to get these tips ready for you well in advance of the games taking place, but I still think I have an excellent opportunity to earn a profit once again with my tips for the Champions League Matchday 3 games listed here.

It’s been an interesting couple of sets of games so far, with a number of teams still boasting 100% records and the last set of games saw perhaps the greatest Champions League upset of all time when Sheriff Tiraspol from Moldova earned their second win in the group by beating Real Madrid 2-1 at the Bernebeu.

I wish I had backed that as one of my tips that week, but in truth these results come along so rarely in the Champions League that picking them out is more luck than judgement. Even so, it was still a hell of a result and one that gives Sheriff a genuine chance of qualifying from their group.

British teams have had a mixed bag. Liverpool have won both their games, but Chelsea, Manchester City and Manchester United have all won and lost one game, so this set of two games is particularly important for them and their hopes to reach the knockout phase of the tournament.

Other teams struggling include Barcelona, who have lost both their opening two games, as have Red Bull Leipzig and AC Milan. While he likes of Inter Milan, Villarreal and FC Porto have just one point.

So this week is the first of a double-header of matches between the two teams in Matchdays 3 and 4, so let’s give you our tips heading into these games.

Champions League Tips: Tuesday 19th October

Ajax VS Borussia Dortmund
19/10/2021 8:00 pm GMT

Key Stats

These two teams both have 100% records, Ajax leading Group C on goal difference alone.
Ajax are also second in the Eredivisie, while Dortmund lie third in the Bundesliga.
The teams have met twice before, back in 2012, with Dortmund winning both games.
Both teams have also won four and lost one of their last five games in all competitions.

Analysis

Whatever variable you want to measure these two teams by, this looks like being a very close game between the two teams most likely to come through from Group C in the Champions League. They have both bettered Besiktas and Sporting in their two games prior and as such, whoever comes out on top in these next two games will likely win the group in my view.

I think that is probably likely to be Dortmund, but only just. This Ajax team is better than the one last season but not as strong as the one that reached the semifinals of this competition a couple of years before that. However a new crop of Ajax stars are developing nicely into a dangerous side.

Dortmund have their own youth quality with the likes of Bellingham, Haaland and Reyna to name just three and I think in terms of quality, they probably just about have the edge at the moment, although away from home, they have looked a bit susceptible at times this season.

I can’t really split these two teams and as such, when that is the case I always feel that going for the draw between the two is the best option. Neither team will feel seven points from their opening three games is a bad return and it will set both up nicely for the next phase of the tournament.

Prediction

Draw - £10 returns £39.00
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FC Porto VS AC Milan
19/10/2021 8:00 pm GMT

Key Stats

Porto lie third in Group B with one point, while Milan are fourth with no points as yet.
Both teams also lie second in their respective domestic league tables.
They have met nine times previously, Milan winning four, Porto 2 with three draws.
They last met in the Super Cup Final in 2003, Milan earning a 1-0 victory.

Analysis

Perhaps somewhat oddly given Milan’s record in European competition, FC Porto have recorded their only two wins over Milan in the San Siro, a 3-2 win in 1997 and a 1-0 win in 1980. At home, the Portuguese team have lost once and drawn three times against the Italian legends.

Milan though are up against it here. Two defeats to Liverpool and Atletico Madrid have given them a mountain to climb in the group and they know that another defeat here would make it extremely difficult for them to progress into the knockout phase.

FC Porto though come into this game having earned a point away to Madrid, but they were then thumped at home by Liverpool last time out, not aided by some of the worst defending and goalkeeping I’ve witnessed in the Champions League’s long history. They will have to put that right to have a chance here.

History shows that games in Portugal between these two teams tend to be tight and close affairs, with two 0-0 draws, a 1-1 draw and a 1-0 win for Milan. I think as such, a draw is going to be the sensible bet to back here.

Prediction

Draw - £10 returns £36.00
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UCL Tips: Wednesday 20th October

Man Utd VS Atalanta
20/10/2021 8:00 pm GMT

Key Stats

United lie 3rd in Group F behind Young Boys, while Atalanta are top of the group.
The two teams have never met each other previously in European competition.
In recent years Atalanta have beaten Everton and Liverpool away and drew with Man City.
United look set to be without Raphael Varane for this game. Harry Maguire may be fit. Analysis

Analysis

This group always looked potentially tricky for Manchester United and their defeat to Young Boys, arguably the weakest team in the group, has put them in a tricky position. Atalanta lead Group F by a point from Young Boys and United, but the Italian side have been one of the trickiest teams to beat in Europe over the last couple of years.

Last season, Liverpool beat them 5-0 in Italy, but at Anfield it was a different story with Atalanta running out the 2-0 winners. They also drew with Manchester City in Italy the year before and in 2017, they beat Everton 3-0 and 5-1 at Goodison Park, so they do perform well against British teams.

They have also picked up a point away to Villarreal in what is likely to be a key result and with United struggling to beat the Spaniards last time out, needing a very late goal to do so, this looks like being another tricky evening for the Red Devils.

I do worry how United will cope without Varane in defence and I think Atalanta may well put in a dogged and determined display to earn a draw here. Oddly enough, I think United’s best chance of beating Atalanta will come in the away leg in a fortnights time.

Prediction

Draw - £10 returns £42.00
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Benfica VS Bayern Munich
20/10/2021 8:00 pm GMT

Key Stats

Neither team has conceded a goal in the Champions League this season.
Bayern top Group E with 6 points, Benfica are second with four.
The teams have met 10 times previously, Bayern winning seven with three drawn games.
All of Benfica’s three draws against Bayern have been at home.

Analysis

Both these teams have started well in Group E, with Bayern winning both games comfortably and Benfica picking up four points. With Barcelona seemingly in the doldrums and struggling, this is a superb opportunity for Benfica in particular to pip the Spanish giants to a place in the knockout phase.

The Portuguese side have started the season well, winning seven of their eight games, but they were surprisingly beaten at home by Portimonense the last time out, which does suggest that the team, while strong, can be beaten at home.

Not that this is likely to worry a Bayern Munich side that were the European Champions just a couple of seasons ago. The Germans top the Bundesliga and have waltzed through their opening two games in the group and they will be supremely confident of getting a result here, especially given their excellent record against Benfica.

With Bayern’s attacking qualities, especially in wide areas, plus Lewandowski in attack, I just can’t see how Benfica, even if they score a goal, can keep Bayern from winning this game and I think the Germans run out either 2-1 or more likely 3-1 winners.

Prediction

Bayern to win and both teams to score - £10 returns £27.50
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*Tips are exactly that tips (predictions) and do not guarantee success.

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