Champions League Betting Tips
Find our tips on every game of the UEFA Champions League, as well as all you need to know to bet on what is regarded as the world's top club competition. Can Liverpool retain the title they won last season or will this be the year Barcelona lift the trophy?
2019/20 Champions League
Every club side in Europe wants to win the UEFA Champions League but only the elite can do so. Being the top dog in your own country is vitally important of course, but becoming the champions of Europe is the ultimate aim. Of course, the name of this competition doesn't quite adequately describe it. The majority of teams taking part aren't champions of their own country. There may well be group games early on but from the last sixteen this is a knock-out tournament and that means anything can happen.
If we have another season like that experienced in 2018/19, then football fans are in for an absolute treat. It was a season that saw some staggering comebacks. Manchester United winning away at PSG despite losing the first leg and having key players missed was an amazing night. It was nothing compared to the shock of Liverpool overturning a 3-0 deficit against Barcelona with a 4-0 win at Anfield. Then there was Tottenham's comeback against Ajax in the semi-final. It was a truly staggering event and one that gave us plenty of betting opportunities.
England supplied both finalists last season as Liverpool beat Tottenham to become European champions for the sixth time in their history. Can English teams dominate again this season? Manchester City dream of extending their domestic domination and conquer Europe, but they are not the only ones. PSG, Juventus, Real Madrid, Barcelona and Bayern Munich will all be major contenders again this season. There's already been the qualifying stages and now the countdown is on to the start of the group stages. The road to the final in Istanbul on 30 May, 2020 is going to be action-packed. Sportytrader will be giving you all the latest news and previews of the key games, so fasten your seatbelts, it's going to be a bumpy but oh so exciting ride.
The Road to Istanbul
It was on June 25, barely a month after Liverpool's triumph in the 2018/19 final, that the quest to find the next Champions League winners began with a preliminary round tournament. No two-leg ties, just four teams battling it out for one precious place in the first qualifying round. Feronkeli from Kosovo won that place but then lost to Welsh champions, The New Saints in the first qualifying round.
You could say that actually the 2019/20 Champions League began a lot earlier than that. The race to qualify for the Champions League was determined by the league positions in countries around Europe. Some countries such as England and Spain see the top four in their league qualify. Other smaller nations just have their league champions qualify to take part. It's a long road for some teams if they want to make it to the group stages. There's the first, second and third qualifying rounds and then the play-off round, all over two legs.
There were some big name casualties this season, all ending up in the Europa League. Porto who have been regulars in the knock-out stages lost in the third qualifying round to Krasnodar. PSV Eindhoven lost to Basel in the second qualifying round and their Swiss conquerors lost in the following round to LASK Linz. Scottish champions Celtic again failed to make it to the group stages, losing to CFR Cluj in the third qualifying round. Cluj didn't make it to the group stages either and are now in the same Europa League group as Celtic.
Only Red Star Belgrade made it all the way from the first qualifying round to the group stages playing eight games. Ajax, who reached the semi-finals last season, had to play four qualifying matches but made it through to the group stages once again.
Now the qualifiers take on those teams that were automatically given a place in the group stages. There are eight groups of four, with each team facing each other home and away playing a total of six matches. The top two going into the knock-out stages. Those finishing third in each group are transferred to the last 32 of the Europa League. As for those who finish bottom of their group, well their European season is over and they have to ensure they qualify for next season's 2020/21 Champions League.
Who will win the 2019/20 Champions League?
- Manchester City 7/2
- Barcelona 5/1
- Liverpool 13/2
- Real Madrid 9/1
- PSG 9/1
- Juventus 11/1
- Bayern Munich 12/1
- Tottenham Hotspur 20/1
- Atletico Madrid 20/1
- Chelsea 25/1
Dates for your Diary
Group Stages: 17 September - 11 December
Last Sixteen: 18 February - 18 March
Quarter Finals: 7 April - 15 April
Semi-Finals: 28 April - 6 May
Final: 30 May in Istanbul
Ever since the investment into Manchester City began, their rich owners have dreamed of the day they win the Champions League. The nearest they have come to achieving that dream was the semi-finals in the 2015/16 season. The past two years has seen them exit at the quarter final stage to English clubs, Liverpool and Tottenham. After a domestic treble last season, City have again been busy in the transfer market with signings such as Rodrigo aimed at boosting their Champions League hopes. As you will soon read, they have been given an ideal draw in the group stages and perhaps this could be the season that Pep Guardiola leads them to Champions League triumph.
The new season has already seen Liverpool win the European Super Cup. They have made an excellent start to the new English Premier League season and could finally win that title for the first time. Can they retain the Champions League though? It's going to be a hectic season for them with the World Club Championship to take part in. They didn't make any major signings during the summer but still have a quality squad that could well see them reach a third final in a row and win another European title.
Real Madrid were hoping to win a fourth straight Champions League title last season. It didn't work out though as the Spanish giants had a hugely disappointing season. They couldn't finish the best team in Madrid, let alone remain the best side in Europe. Real Madrid lost in the last sixteen to Ajax, their worst performance in the Champions League since 2010. They will want a much better performance this season and new signings include Eden Hazard, Luka Jovic and Ferland Mendy with close to £300m being spent. That alone shows that Real Madrid want their title back.
Spain has dominated the Champions League in recent years but it's not been Barcelona who have been lifting the trophy. They may have won La Liga for the past two seasons but not since 2015 have they lifted the Champions League trophy. One appearance in the final over the past eight seasons just isn't good enough, not when you have the stellar squad that Barcelona possess. But it shows this is a knock-out tournament in the second half of the season and anything can happen in that environment. The arrival of Antoine Griezmann and Frankie De Jong will again make Barcelona strong contenders to win the Champions League.
Champions League Groups Draw
For many, the Champions League began on 29 August. That was when the draw for the 2019/20 Champions League group stages took place. The top teams in Europe discovered just who they'd be playing in the group stages. Teams were hoping to avoid a group of death and hopefully be given one that would ensure a smooth passage to the knock-out stages. Here are the eight groups that have been drawn and will decide the sixteen teams going into the knock-out stages
- Group A: Paris Saint-Germain, Real Madrid, Club Brugge and Galatasaray
- Group B: Bayern Munich, Tottenham Hotspur, Olympiacos and Red Star Belgrade
- Group C: Manchester City, Shakhtar Donetsk, Dinamo Zagreb and Atalanta
- Group D: Juventus, Atletico Madrid, Bayer Leverkusen and Lokomotiv Moscow
- Group E: Liverpool, Napoli, Red Bull Salzburg and Genk
- Group F: Barcelona, Borussia Dortmund, Inter Milan and Slavia Prague
- Group G: Zenit Saint Petersburg, Benfica, Lyon and RB Leipzig
- Group H: Chelsea, Ajax, Valencia and Lille.
Champions League Groups Analysis
The Champions League group matches provide punters with a great number of betting opportunities spread over a period of four months. From the moment the draw was made, it was possible to place bets on who would win each group. Not just that, but you can bet on whether teams will qualify from their group and make it into the knock-out stages.
Looking at the groups that were drawn last month, there are some great matches lined up between September and December. Group A will see two clashes between PSG, who promise so much but struggle to go deep in this tournament and Real Madrid who have won three of the last four Champions Leagues.
Tottenham had a few problems last season getting out of their group before making it all the way to the final. This season they take on Bayern Munich but with Olympiacos and Red Star Belgrade making up the rest of the group, the English and German sides should have few problems progressing to the last sixteen.
Manchester City have won the English Premier League for the past two seasons but are yet to even reach the Champions League final. They couldn't have asked for a better draw than having to face Shakhtar Donetsk, Dinamo Zagreb and Serie A side Atalanta who are in this competition for the first time.
Juventus have been spending big in the transfer market during the summer. They just keep on winning Serie A but long to conquer Europe. Cristiano Ronaldo should be able to get a few goals in Group D and the key match will be against Atletico Madrid.
Last year saw Liverpool struggle to get through in a group that included both PSG and Napoli. They lost all three away games but some Anfield magic got them through. They again meet Napoli this season in Group E. Red Bull Salzburg and Genk should be battling it out for the Europa League place.
Barcelona thought they were through to the semi-finals when beating Liverpool 3-0 at home last season. Then came the Anfield horror nighta and elimination from the competition. Group F should see them get through to the last sixteen but there could be a massive battle for the second qualifying spot between Borussia Dortmund and Inter Milan. Slavia Prague face a tough six games in this group.
Group G is the one that most fans will probably just watch a few highlights. The quartet of Benfica, Zenit Saint-Petersburg, Lyon and RB Leipzig isn't that thrilling is it? This could be one of the closest fought groups with the pressure on Benfica as the only remaining Portuguese team in the Champions League.
Ajax had to qualify and face a difficult time in Group H. The Dutch champions have to take on Chelsea, Valencia and Lille and this looks to be a group that wlll be closely fought with Chelsea in transition this season and Valencia a difficult place to get a win.
Who will win the Groups?
- Group A: Real Madrid 4/5
- Group B: Bayern Munich 8/13
- Group C: Manchester City 1/6
- Group D: Juventus 8/13
- Group E: Liverpool 1/2
- Group F: Barcelona 2/5
- Group G: Lyon 9/4
- Group H: Chelsea 11/10
The Top Goal Scorers
There are so many bets that you can place on the Champions League. One that can maintain your interest for a fair while is on the top goal scorer in the competition this season. There are of course many contenders with some fantastic and prolific scorers to choose from. Harry Kane from Tottenham is one major contender for this bet. He has already been scoring goals for both Tottenham and England this season.
With a bet like this, it's good to look at teams that are expected to go a long way in the competition. Those strikers that play for teams who have reasonably comfortable looking group opposition are also worth a bet. They may be involved in some high scoring games and get a few goals in the early stages of the competition.
Cristiano Ronaldo is the all-time highest goal scorer in the Champions League. He's scored 127 goals, that puts him 15 clear of his nearest rival, Lionel Messi. Both will again be trying to add to those totals this season and are well worth a bet to end the competition as the highest goal scorer.
Champions League 2019/20: Our free betting tips
The scene is set therefore for another fascinating Champions League. All those betting opportunities to come and our team of experts will help you get some winners in the months to come. They will provide you with excellent previews, packed with key statistics and showing you just why they think their tips will become winners. Check out the site for all the latest news and odds.