Post by Marc Carinci
Summer time is over. That only means one factor: the Champions League is back again. This year’s joint favourites, Barcelona and Chelsea, have quickly become bitter rivals in this competition. That rivalry is certain to intensify considering that they had been drawn into the identical group at this early stage of the tournament. The format is as follows: 32 teams contest the group stage, divided into 8 groups of 4. The group winners and runners-up advance to the knockout stages, the 8 3rd-positioned teams move into the UEFA Cup third round, and the eight fourth-placed teams are eradicated. Right here is an overview of all the groups with predictions on who we assume to win every group.
Group A: Barcelona (-118), Chelsea (+125), Werder Bremen (15/1), Levski Sofia (250/1)
Possibly the Chelsea-Barcelona rivalry will not be quite as extreme at this early stage. Equally groups will advance from this group and there is a very good likelihood they will meet once more at a later stage of this competitors. Chelsea appear noticeably shakier this yr. Their previously impenetrable defence seems a bit much more lax. That will bode sick for the Blues. But in contrast to the past number of decades, with two Premiership titles under their belt, this time Jose Mourinho’s explicit goal is to win the Champions League. Even now, we have to aspect with Barcelona right here. They are goal scoring devices and should demolish Bremen and Levski, and they are more than able of scoring versus Chelsea. At near to even cash, they are well worth backing to win this group.
Group B: Bayern Munich (+125), Inter Milan (+163), Sporting Lisbon (six/one), Spartak Moscow (forty/1)
Inter is a huge price right here and are worth backing. They have extra strength, quality and depth to their squad and right after the Calciopoli scandal were belated awarded last year’s Scudetto in Serie A. Sporting Lisbon are no pushovers, but Inter can and need to get previous them. There is a single slight be concerned although. Bayern Munich is the sort of group that can run up the score versus weak opponents like Spartak Moscow. If Bayern and Inter are degree on factors, Bayern could well win this group on objective variation.
Group C: Liverpool (-161), PSV Eindhoven (+450), Bordeaux (5/1), Galatasaray (10/1)
Although they are odds-on, it really is hard to search past Liverpool in this group. They are a effectively-organized side and lifted the CL trophy two a long time ago. Manger Rafa Benitez is experienced at European levels of competition and ought to navigate his staff by means of this group with ease. PSV are a shadow of the staff they were final season. There is a very good chance they won’t end in the best two of the Dutch league, let by yourself replicate their over regular Champions League kind of recent years. Bordeaux and Galatasaray are 2nd-fee clubs in this competitors.
Group D: Valencia (-125), Roma (+a hundred and fifty), Shakhtar Donetsk (twenty/one), Olympiakos (29/one)
It’s tough to understand why Roma are underdogs in this group. They are favoured to win this year’s diluted Italian league. Their squad is a great deal more powerful this period both on paper and judging by their Serie A final results so far. But the Romans confront hard Spanish levels of competition in this group. Valencia have a disciplined and experienced Champions League aspect. They are deadly on the counterattack and stifle the offence of their opponents. This seems like a coin flip among Roma and Valencia, so we’ll consider the Italians at odds-versus. Maintain and eye on Olympiakos. They won’t win this group, but, like several Greek teams, they can be hazardous in their property games.
Group E: Lyon (-125), Genuine Madrid (+163), Steaua Bucharest (10/1), Dynamo Kiev (fifty/1)
The collapse of Juventus has benefited no staff far more than Genuine Madrid. The Spanish giants picked up a handful much more Galacticos and one of the world’s best managers, Fabio Capello. They are serious contenders for both the La Liga and Champions League titles this year. But they will have to get previous their nemesis in this tournament: Lyon. The French side are perennially underestimated by the bookmakers even with excelling in European opposition. We’ll happily back again them once again to win this group and quite possibly the entire factor.
Group F: Manchester United (-275), Benfica (+650), Celtic (thirteen/one), FC Copenhagen (50/1)
Man Utd couldn’t have asked for a more favourable draw. But luck is what they’ll need to get any further than this stage. At this short price, it really is not well worth betting on the Red Devils to win the group. Copenhagen are a dangerous team, getting knocked Ajax out of this opposition. They are a huge value to win the group and are value a small punt. Benfica are solid as ever before in Portugal and experienced in the Champions League. They should declare second spot.
Group G: Arsenal (-161), Hamburg (9/one), Porto (nine/one), CSKA Moscow (10/one)
Arsenal were the shock team of the Champions League last 12 months, going all the way to the closing and defying expectations with every match. This yr, they appear to be overestimated. The Gunners have not but settled into their new Emirates Stadium. The squad look noticeably unpleasant and will get much more time to jell. In light of the over, it is worth looking at the other individuals. CSKA are a enormous price tag at 10/one and the 2005 UEFA Cup champions must be backed to win this group. Russia is an intimidating location for visiting teams and the Muscovites are far more than capable of claiming results from their travels.
Group H: AC Milan (-333), Lille (6/1), AEK Athens (25/one), Anderlecht (33/1)
Milan really should cruise through this group with relative ease. They are capable of dismantling practically any crew in the globe and opponents like Lille, AEK and Anderlecht are hardly hazardous challengers. Lille are solid in France and might hold Milan to a draw in their property leg. As usual, Greek side AEK will be hard at house too, but they are hopeless on their travels. Anderlecht do not deserve to be in this opposition. Even at this quick value, take Milan.
About the Writer
Marc Carinci is a documented member of the Expert Handicappers League. Study all of his content articles at www.procappers.com/Marc_Carinci.htm