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Alex Campean breaks down the Champions League and Europa League semifinal matches for this week. Liverpool take on Villarreal in the Champions League, while West Ham takes on Eintracht Frankfurt in the Europa League.

Champions League, Europa League Semifinal Picks: Liverpool vs Villarreal, West Ham vs Eintracht Frankfurt

Liverpool vs. Villarreal (Champions League Semifinals First Leg) Wednesday 3PM ET

If both Juventus and Bayern Munich took them lightly and burnt themselves, it won’t be the same for the giant killers Villarreal against the most consistent team in Europe, Liverpool.

After knocking out Juventus in the last 16 and beating Bayern Munich in the quarter-finals, Unai Emery will find it really hard to go against Jurgen Klopp and surprise him. The Spanish side will definitely have a defensive approach and try to strike on the break. Unfortunately, they will be without their star striker Gerard Moreno who was forced off during the 2-1 victory over Getafe earlier this month.

They will have to rely on Arnaut Danjuma’a amazing pace with the Dutch player scoring a brace in the 2-0 win against Valencia. Danjuma scored against both Bayern Munich and Juventus but facing the likes of Virgil van Dijk, Joel Matip or Ibrahima Konate will be a much more difficult test.

Emery has opted to rest many of his key players in recent weeks but they are still unbeaten in their previous five games across all competitions winning three in the process. Alberto Moreno will not be playing against his former club on Wednesday as he remains on the comeback trail from a ruptured cruciate ligament. Yeremi Pino will join him in the recovery room while Francis Coquelin should be back in the starting lineup.

Jurgen Klopp’s side enters this crucial match in unreal form. They’re second in the Premier League just one point behind Man City, the League Cup already in the bag, as well as an FA Cup final appearance to come against Chelsea, there is a chance to see them win the quadruple. They kept two clean sheets in their previous two games against Everton and Man United and we don’t expect them to concede on Wednesday. Jordan Henderson and Luis Diaz should be back in the starting lineup after being left on the bench against Everton.

The difference between the two squads is huge and despite Emery’s managerial master-class and experience at this level, Villarreal should not be able to pull off the upset against the Reds. Liverpool is expected to start strong and take the lead in the first half, taking advantage of Villarreal’s injury issues.

Liverpool vs. Villarreal Pick

Pick: Liverpool HT/FT at -110 (Bet $110 to win $100)

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West Ham vs. Eintracht Frankfurt (Europa League Semifinals First Leg) Thursday 3PM ET

West Ham is out of the Premier League top-four race after a poor domestic run of form and they are now sitting seventh with 52 points. Wolves are sitting just three points behind them in the standings but they have a game in hand on them. Their main objective is to play in the European competitions next season but for that to happen they must go all the way and lift the Europa League trophy.

West Ham were arguably underdogs to defeat each of Sevilla and Lyon but they managed to have a strong performance in both ties. For the first time in three tries, they are favorites to qualify further being priced at -180. They are also favorites to win the first leg on home soil being priced at -105 with Bet365.

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Issa Diop has joined Kurt Zouma and Angelo Ogbonna on the sidelines for the Hammers. Declan Rice, Jarrod Bowen, and Michail Antonio were all rested last weekend against Chelsea so they will be fresh and ready to help their team approach the second leg with a win.

Glasner will make at least two changes to his Frankfurt side with Evan N'Dicka, who scored two goals last weekend including an own-goal, and Kristijan Jakic both serving suspensions. The two teams look to be in the same position. They are forced to win the competition in order to play in Europe next season. It’s risky to go for a high-scoring affair because we don’t expect West Ham to leave too many spaces at the back. The atmosphere will be electric on Thursday and the fans will definitely push West Ham from behind. The hosts should have enough to win this game and take another step towards the Europa League final.

West Ham vs. Eintracht Frankfurt Pick

Pick: West Ham ML at -105 (Bet $105 to win $100)

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Article Author


Alex Campean has been a soccer fan since 1990 when he watched the 1990 FIFA World Cup in Italy. He knows everything about the top 5 European leagues, Champions League and Europa League and he is well known for his “trade-mark” “Alex Classic” bet (both teams to score and over 2.5 goals in the match). He’s very disciplined, follows a strict set of rules, and has great bankroll management. He’s our European soccer specialist and he's having an average of 55 units of profit in the last 7 years with his soccer picks. He’s all about positive energy, respect, and long-term profit and if you ever hear “Alex’s last-minute goal” that means he did it again winning a bet in the last minute of the game, so never lose hope.


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