Tip Zenit St Petersburg - Club Brugge
Match Day 1 of the UEFA Champions League is here and Zenit, who have been in great form domestically, hope to carry on with that in Europe, when they host Belgian side Club Brugge in Group F. Both sides lead in their home leagues and will be hoping to start off on a winning note as they build on their fine runs. Zenit saw off Sochi 3-1 in the Russian league, to keep their place at the top of the standings and from their recent matches, perhaps their biggest worry would be the few clean sheets they are keeping. The team has managed just three clean sheets in the last 10 matches, though on the flip side, they have scored in all but two of the 10. Artem Dzyuba and Aleksandr Erokhin are in good form for Zenit and have scored eight goals between them in the last five matches. The two will be the relied on again here and with their experience, Zenit should be hopeful of goals at home. It has however not been all rosy for Zenit; in the Champions League, they have three losses in their last four matches, and only two wins in nine. They finished bottom of their group last season, with seven points and will rely on home form to push them through this season. In their last eight home matches in the Champions League, Zenit have six wins, and two losses. The Russian side has failed to score in just one of the last nine home matches in this competition, while they have scored two or more in five of their last seven in the Champions League.
Club Brugge, on their part, head to this game straight from a 1-1 draw with Standard Liege in the Belgian top flight. That result, though marking a sixth straight unbeaten outing, ended their run of five straight wins but they will still have the needed psyche for this clash. However, just like Zenit, they have just three clean sheets in their last 10 matches. For Club Brugge, scoring has not been a problem though; they have netted in each of their last six matches and in six of their last eight they have scored two goals or more. Apart from the few clean sheets they have kept, Club Brugge will also be concerned about their form in the Champions League, having failed to win any of their last six games there. In three of their last five Champions League matches, they have conceded two or more, while they have two wins in 16 away matches in the competition. In half of their last 14 away Champions League matches, Brugge have conceded two goals or more.
Key points Zenit St Petersburg - Club Brugge
Club Brugge have two wins in 16 away Champions League matches
Club Brugge are winless in six Champions League matches.
Club Brugge have three clean sheets in 10 matches
Zenit have six wins in eight Champions League matches at home.
Zenit have scored in eight of their last 10 matches.
Conclusion Zenit St Petersburg - Club Brugge
Club Brugge and Zenit have met just once before, in a 2014 friendly match, which ended 1-1. It will be different here, with both sides seeking a flying start. Zenit have a fine run in the Champions League at home, winning six of the last eight matches and will definitely settle faster here. They face a side that has struggled a bit in the Champions League and especially in away matches. Brugge have lost nine of their last 16 away matches in this competition and they also head here with a not so good defensive run. Zenit have also not been the best in defence lately and maybe this is the only area the two sides will cancel out. We expect both sides to score, but on the strength of home/away performance, a Zenit win is our pick. Brugge remains a decent side, even with their poor away run in this competition and having scored in four of their last five away matches in the Champions League, we will back them to score here too. A 2-1 win for Zenit will be a good pick.
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Zenit St Petersburg Club Brugge Prediction published on October 18, 2020