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Champions League Tips: 2nd & 3rd October
by the Cheeky Punter
It’s another week of Champions League football to look forward to this week as Europe’s finest teams start their second Matchday of games in the group phase.
We had a good profitable weekend, £10 stakes were up +£25, so I’m hoping to carry that form on with these Champions League tips and predictions.
English teams enjoyed a somewhat mixed start to the tournament with wins for Liverpool (V Paris St Germain) and Manchester United (v Young Boys) but Manchester City and Tottenham both lost their opening games to Lyon and Inter Milan respectively.
I’ll be focussing on my attention on their matches as it’s where I feel I’ve got the best knowledge.
Football Betting Tips: Tuesday 2nd October
October 2, 2018
October 2, 2018
Hoffenheim dropped to 10th in the Bundesliga at the weekend after a 1-2 home reverse to Red Bull Leipzig.
City are top of the Premier League thanks to a 2-0 win over Brighton, with Liverpool and Chelsea drawing.
Hoffenheim are second in Group F, two points behind Lyon. City lie bottom of the group having lost at home to Lyon 2-1 on the opening night of fixtures.
The two teams have never met before previously in European competition.
After City’s shock defeat to Lyon in the opening round of fixtures, this game takes on added significance for Pep Guardiola’s men and while not a must-win game, it is certainly one that City will feel that they can ill-afford to lose.
Hoffenheim earned a very good point away to Shakhtar Donetsk in that opening round of games and their performance on that night will have sent City plenty of warning of just how dangerous the German side are when coming forward, as they had many more chances than the two they scored against a Ukrainian team that beat City in this competition last season.
Pep Guardiola though will be up against familiar foes; when manager of Bayern he had a good record against Hoffenheim, winning five and drawing one of the six matches he played against tonight’s opponents.
Providing City can curb the marauding runs of right back Nico Schulz, I fancy the away side to cause Hoffenheim real problems on the counter attack and I am expecting the likes of Leroy Sane and David Silva to hold the key to providing City with the win they badly need.
Man City to win & both teams to score - £10 returns £25.50
United’s 3-1 defeat to West Ham on Saturday was their third league of the season and leaves them in 10th place in the league with ten points from seven games.
Valencia picked up their first win of the season at the weekend with a 1-0 away win over Real Sociedad, a result which moved them up to 12th in the La Liga table.
United lead Group H on goal difference ahead of Juventus, both with 3 points. Valencia lie third on goal difference ahead of Young Boys.
The teams have met eight times previously, with five of those games finishing in a draw, Valencia have won one match and United two.
Manchester United got off to a great start away to Young Boys last time out, earning a comprehensive 3-0 win over the Swiss Champions. Valencia though were somewhat poor, allowing 10-man Juventus, who had Cristiano Ronaldo sent off, to score twice to inflict a 2-0 home defeat on them, and they missed a penalty in the process of that defeat too.
Historically, games between the teams have tended to be very close, as the five draws from the eight encounters between the teams shows. However, I think there is a larger gap between the teams now, with United making a more impressive start to their campaign both domestically and in Europe than their Spanish opponents.
Valencia’s lack of goals this season is a real worry for me here, especially against a United defence which will always be strong and well organised. Given the Spaniards lack of form and confidence, I think they are in for a tough night at Old Trafford on Tuesday.
Although the United back line has been a little shaky of late, I am backing them to keep a clean sheet against a shot-shy Valencia attack and I can certainly see United’s attackers grabbing at least one goal, if not more, to bring them their second victory in the Champions League this season.
Man Utd to win to nil - £10 returns £27.50
Football Tips: Wednesday 3rd October
October 3, 2018
October 3, 2018
Napoli’s title hopes took a hit at the weekend as they lost 3-1 away to Juventus. They remain in 2nd place in Serie A but are 6 points adrift of Juventus.
Liverpool’s 1-1 draw at Stamford Bridge saw them drop into 2nd in the Premier League and ended their 100% winning record in the Premier League.
Liverpool head Group C with 3 points, with Napoli tied in second on one point with Red Star Belgrade, following a 0-0 draw between the two teams in Serbia.
The teams met in 2010 in the Europa League drawing 0-0 in Italy before a 3-0 win at Anfield for Liverpool. The Reds also beat Napoli 5-0 at Anfield during pre-season.
Napoli battled to a 0-0 draw with Red Star Belgrade in Serbia last time out but the Italians dominated the game and will feel aggrieved that they could not turn that pressure into a victory against the team in the group that will likely prop up the rest.
Liverpool played a cracker of a game with PSG, dominating the game, but it took a last gasp strike from Roberto Firmino to take the Reds to victory over the French side, a win which saw Liverpool occupy top spot in the group after one game.
After mauling Napoli 5-0 at Anfield in pre-season, Liverpool should be confident of doing well in the San Paolo, where they drew once before in the Europa League in 2010. However, Napoli have started the Serie A season well, and under Carlo Ancelotti, they have a manager who has had his successes against Liverpool in the past.
Much depends for me on how Liverpool’s attacking trio fire in this game and if they can get back to anywhere near their best, I am backing the Reds to snatch another crucial victory on the road to move into pole position in Group C, although I do feel that Napoli will find the net once.
Liverpool to win & both teams to score - £10 returns £35.50
A Harry Kane double was enough to give Tottenham a 2-0 win over Huddersfield at the weekend, though Christian Eriksen missed the game through injury.
Barca’s poor run of form continued with a 1-1 draw at home to Bilbao, that coming after a 2-1 defeat away to Leganes. Barca remain top of La Liga on goal difference.
Barcelona are top of Group B with three points. Spurs are third with no points but with a better goal difference than PSV Eindhoven.
The teams have met twice in competitive games, both in April 1982, the first game finishing in a 1-1 draw at White Hart Lane and Barcelona won the second leg 1-0 at the Nou Camp.
After conceding two late goals against Inter Milan to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory, Tottenham now face a huge task in their second game in Group B as Barcelona come to Wembley, as one of the favourites to win the tournament overall this season.
Spurs form has improved since that loss to Inter, while Barcelona were unexpectedly beaten by La Liga’s bottom team Leganes last week. A result which shocked all of Spain. So the Catalan giants can be beaten and it is worth noting that Spurs managed to draw with Real Madrid and then beat Real on home soil at this stage of the tournament last season.
However, while Spurs are getting back to winning, they just don’t look as solid defensively, or as fluid going forward as they did last season. Barcelona, on the other hand, have so many talented individuals that any of the likes of Suarez, Coutinho, Dembele or Messi can win the game for them with a moment of brilliance.
I think this will be the game of the night and I can see both teams finding the net, perhaps multiple times, but in the end, I think Barcelona’s attacking ability will be the key to them handing Spurs another Champions League defeat.
The Cheeky Punter is an ex professional online sports bettor and trader with over 15 years of experience in the industry. He has worked for a number of top bookmakers including Ladbrokes, William Hill and Coral. He's also written for a number of leading news outlets including the Guardian, i (newspaper) and Soccer Lens. More about him here.