As the Champions League reaches Matchday 3, four remaining rounds will be squeezed in between now and November 2nd. With Europe’s finest preparing to play each other away home and away in the next eight days, the shape of each Group will look a lot clearer by the end of the month and MD4. In the meantime, MD3 once again serves up more tasty footballing treats.
Beginning at Anfield on Tuesday night, Liverpool host the latest edition of the ‘The Battle of Britain’ as Rangers make the trip from Glasgow. As both sides go in pursuit of Group A leaders Napoli, the Reds were narrow winners at home last time out courtesy of Fabio Carvalho’s last-gasp winner versus Ajax, whilst Gio van Bronckhorst’s charges recorded back-to-back losses, also yet to score a goal in season’s competition. A trip to Merseyside may not alter their current predicament, despite thrashing Hearts at the weekend.
With that said however, after Liverpool shipped three to Brighton on Saturday, the ‘Gers will fancy their chances of at least scoring and for both teams to do just that, BetUK.com’s better-than-evens 27/25 is worth a look.
Arguably, the tie of MD3 takes place in Milan as Inter entertain Barcelona at San Siro. With the hosts sitting a lowly ninth in Serie A after their latest league defeat, La Blaugrana arrive in Lombardy with both sides locked on three points apiece. Barca have won six of the last seven games, but their only defeat in that time did come on the road to Bayern Munich in MD2. On current form against a much-improved Barca side to last season, it is hard to back the Nerazzurri right now but Simone Inzaghi needs a response from his side. Backing the draw at 16/5 with Betfred may be the tonic for punters.
Chelsea and AC Milan go head-to-head in London on Wednesday meanwhile, with Olivier Giroud set to be reunited with his former employers. For the Frenchman to net at Stamford Bridge, a very decent 3/1 price can be fetched with UniBet.
Eintracht Frankfurt’s home clash with Tottenham looks fascinating. As Spurs lick their wounds from defeat in the north London derby, Antonio Conte looks to improve his side’s European lot. That may be a tough ask though. In fact, with the Lilywhites’ only win away from home this term at Nottingham Forest, not only do they come into this after a loss to Sporting Clube De Portugal last month, but the hosting Eagles have won three on the bounce in all comps. Two sides capable of scoring a hatful, odds of 16/5 with Betway for both to score in the first half catches the eye.
A game that could fly under the radar and steal the show, Benfica’s home game with Paris Saint-Germain could be quite special. Both on six points, back-to-back games in a week will likely go a long way to determining who will progress from the Group H as top seeds. Though PSG are 7/9 favourites with SBK for the win, the Portuguese leaders cannot be underestimated given the fact they have won every game played this term, including impressively in Turin last time out. There is excellent value in the hosts here. Rafa Silva has been a constant threat in the opening two months of the campaign and is 7/2 to score anytime, whilst for Benfica to score over 1.5 goals, 13/8 odds with both Bet365 and SpreadEx has every chance of coming in.
Finally in Belgium, perhaps the biggest story of the opening games have been Club Brugge. After thrashing Porto in their own back yard to follow-up beating Bayer Leverkusen 1-0 in MD1, next up come Atletico Madrid. A win over the former finalists would go a long way to securing their path into the last 16 and given the wave of success Carl Hoefkens has his side riding, a Brugge win at 13/4 with UniBet must be a consideration.