Champions League football returns to our screens this week as the final set of the Round of 16 second leg fixtures get played out. Some teams will go through, some will bow out and there might be room for some comebacks as well.
Let’s go straight to today’s action.
Manchester City vs Borussia Monchengladbach Tips and Prediction
Manchester City have all the advantage heading into this encounter, having registered a 2-0 win in the reverse fixture that served as the away game. It means they just have to avoid conceding three goals in order to advance through to the next round, joining the likes of Bayern Munich, PSG and Borussia Dortmund.
As for their opponents, a potential comeback opportunity at the Puskas Arena serves as the real element of hope in a season that has turned upside down following the announcement of coach Marco Rose’s departure to Borussia Dortmund next season.
Winless in their last eight competitive matches, the Foals have dropped to tenth in the Bundesliga and were knocked out of the DFB Pokal by Dortmund, of all clubs. As such, they have all the incentive in the world to come out all guns blazing in the pursuit of achieving the seemingly impossible this midweek.
How the Match Could Go
It’s a tale of two different sides at the moment. Manchester City have been brilliant this year, their only loss coming at the hands of rivals Manchester United. Monchengladbach have been absolutely poor and have lost their last six consecutive games. We can expect the Premier League side to dominate most of the game and likely stroll to another victory.
Tip: Manchester City win
City’s defence has appeared slightly shakier than usual in recent weeks, but Guardiola’s men should have no problems whatsoever repeating their first-leg performance and getting the job done in style. Monchengladbach and their soon-to-be ex-manager just cannot find inspiration from anywhere on the pitch at the moment, and we expect City to chalk up another two-goal triumph on their way to the last eight. Bet365 have 1.22 odds, Bet9ja have 1.25 and 1xbet have 1.26.
Over 2.5 Goals
The main reason for this is Monchengladbach’s poor form and faltering defence at the moment. They conceded three goals last time out against Augsburg and it doesn’t come any easier against one of the most in-form sides in Europe. However, City’s defence has been shaky of late and Monchengladbach can still fancy their chance of getting a goal at least. Regardless, it’ll be City doing most of the talking on the pitch. Bet9ja have 1.50 odds, 1xbet have 1.51 and Bet365 have 1.53.
Anytime Goal-scorer (Manchester City)
The influential City striker was finally back scoring in the Premier League after 417 days over the past weekend. Aguero has struggled this season with injuries and coronavirus this term but that goal against Fulham could motivate him to carry on what he does best. Bet365 have 1.72 odds for him to score while Bet9ja have 2.00.
Mahrez was benched over the weekend as part of Guardiola’s rotating policy and could be deployed to the starting lineup today. He has been one of the most consistent performers for City in recent weeks and he could come as value to get a goal today. Bet365 have 2.25 odds while Bet9ja have 2.50.
Anytime Goal-scorer (Borussia Monchengladbach)
Gladbach captain Lars Stindl netted two UCL goals earlier this season during victories against Shakhtar Donetsk, and his last four competitive strikes all came between the 25th-40th minute. The forward has 13 goals this season and could be a value bet to get in on the goals tonight. Given Monchengladbach’s poor form at the moment, he’ll be eager to rise to the occasion and inspire his side to a good performance at least. He also missed a penalty at the weekend and will be eager to atone for that. Bet365 have 4.00 odds for him to score while Bet9ja have 5.50.
Alberto Luis Jonas Hofmann
The German has seven goals for Monchengladbach this term and is their next best scorer after Stindl. He also has a thing for scoring at home and he could be worth a punt today. More value comes with Hoffman as Bet365 have 6.00 odds for him to score while Bet9ja have it better at 7.50.
Real Madrid vs Atalanta Betting Tips and Prediction
Real Madrid will be action against Serie A outfit Atalanta at Estadio Alfredo Di Stefano, hoping to make it through to the quarterfinals.
Los Blancos head into the game with a slender 1-0 advantage from the first leg courtesy of a Ferland Mendy strike. Since that victory though, Zinedine Zidane’s side have looked dodgy, being held to 1-1 draws by Real Sociedad and Atletico Madrid and just about managing to win over strugglers Elche in La Liga last time out.
Atalanta, meanwhile, are in better shape coming into Tuesday’s clash. Gian Piero Gasperini’s men have won three of their four games since losing to Real Madrid, most recently beating Spezia 3-1 in Serie A. In the process, they have scored 10 goals while letting in just three and must carry that momentum forward to stand a chance of making a comeback.
It promises to be an intriguing clash on Tuesday night with Atalanta well within a shout of making it through despite Real Madrid’s narrow advantage.
How the Game Could Go
Atalanta are more than capable of making Tuesday’s contest extremely uncomfortable for Madrid, but it is difficult to look past the home side here. Zidane’s team has recovered a number of key players at a vital stage of the season, and we expect Los Blancos to edge their way into the quarter-finals.
Tip: Over 2.5 Goals
Goals should be the order of the day given the theme of the match. Atalanta would be all out for goals in a bid to stage comeback while Real Madrid would also be looking to score early to put the game to bed. The anxious build-up to the game could see both teams score at both ends and we could see at least three goals after 90 minutes. Bet365 have 1.57 odds, Bet9ja have 1.58 and 1xbet have 1.66.
Both Teams to Score: YES
For the reasons explained above, we’re expecting both teams to score at least. Atalanta are on good scoring form of late, having scored 10 goals in three games. Only Inter managed to keep them quiet in their last four games. Real Madrid will likely get on the scores-sheet to and it could make for an entertaining game. Bet9ja have 1.49 odds, Bet365 have 1.50 and 1xbet have 1.60.
Anytime Goal-scorer (Real Madrid)
His importance to Real Madrid cannot be over-emphasized. He has scored their last three goals in La Liga and scored two goals to give them a comeback win against Elche at the weekend. He missed the first leg of this clash and could be fired up to make his mark on this one. Bet365 have 1.90 odds for him to score while Bet9ja have 2.25.
Asides Benzema, it’s an extremely difficult sport to predict who could score for Real Madrid. However, Vinicius seems to have benefitted from recent injuries as he has seen more game time than usual. He started at the weekend against Elche and could get the nod once again. If he does start, he could be the next reasonable option to get a goal. Bet365 have 2.75 odds while Bet9ja have theirs at 4.00.
Anytime Goal-scorer (Atalanta)
Duván Zapata has scored three UCL goals this season, being Atalanta’s first goal-scorer in both matches he’s found the net. The Colombian forward has 13 total goals this season and he’s impressed largely in front of goal. He is also on top form at the moment and remains a good shout to score for sure. Bet365 have 2.30 odds for him to score while Bet9ja have theirs at 3.00.
Alongside fellow Colombian Zapata, Muriel has been the menace for Atalanta upfront. With 19 goals this season, he is their top scorer and has also been in decent scoring form of late. He could be one of Atalanta’s best shot at a comeback. Similar to teammate Zapata, Bet365 also have 2.30 odds for him to score while Bet9ja have theirs at 3.00.
Football Lover. All-round junkie of the beautiful game. Could be found watching football most of the time. If not he’s writing about them or making some punditry you don’t agree with. A certain bias for Arsenal and Santos FC.