However, Manchester City, Arsenal and United fans will be pleased with this weekend’s football, as will Spain’s last three title winners, who all won this weekend to keep pace with unlikely league leaders Celta Vigo. Chelsea will also be pleased to have returned to winning ways, and each of England’s clubs will be hoping they can take their domestic form from the weekend into Europe, where a crucial week of Champions League ties are ahead.
Porto face Maccabi Haifa, and the Portugese team will be buoyed with their win over legendary coach Mourinho’s Chelsea, proving that they remain a formidable club since their historic capture of this trophy under the current Chelsea boss. The Portugese side are unbeaten in all competitions this season, sitting pretty atop both the Portugese League, and their own Champions League group. Opponents Maccabi Tel have not won a game in the competition so far, and have conceded 6 goals without scoring – a trend they’re going to find difficult to reverse away to Porto. I can see Porto leading both at half time and at full time here, and I’m backing them to do so at best odds of 1.62 with 888Sport.
Juventus take on Borussia Mohengladbach having forgotten to take their domestic struggles into Europe this season: whilst they lie 14th in the Serie A table, they occupy the top of their Champions League table with two wins from their two matches, against Manchester City and Sevilla, two sides in better form domestically than The Old Lady. Borussia Mohengladbach had a wretched start to their league campaign but have turned it around with 4 wins in their last 4 league matches. Having said that, they have only kept one clean sheet all season, and you have to back Juventus to score a couple against their leaky defence with the squad they have, and also home advantage. Back Over 1.5 Juventus goals at odds of 1.53 with Coral.
The tie of the round sees Arsenal – who have been defeated twice in their two Champions League matches so far this season – take on the might of Bayern Munich who, not content with breaking the Bundesliga record for consecutive wins to start a league campaign (they have won their opening 9 league matches), have also opened their Champions League campaign in similar fashion, hitting 8 goals without reply in their 2 matches so far. Arsenal go into this game knowing that they need to pick up points in at least one game against the German champions to remain in the competition, and the match in which they are most likely to do that is this home tie. I fancy Arsenal to go for it in this game, and with both teams top heavy in terms of fielding attack-minded line-ups, I am taking Both Teams To Score at odds of 1.57 with 10Bet.
Finally, Manchester United travel to Russia to take on CSKA Moscow in their tie, with both sides believing they have enough quality to win what should be an evenly matched game. Neither team will play this match conservatively, as both will want to have an edge over their opponent going into the next European match at Old Trafford. With the attacking instincts of Manchester United, and in particular Wayne Rooney, having returned, I’m backing Over 2.5 Match Goals here at best odds of 2.00 with BetVictor.
Put these four selections in an ACCA and it pays 7.52!