CHAMPIONS LEAGUE: Our football tipster The Ultra previews Wednesday’s Champions League games between MANCHESTER CITY v SPORTING LISBON and REAL MADRID v PSG both with a recommended BETDAQ bet and extended stats.
MANCHESTER CITY V SPORTING LISBON
8pm We have a massive night in the Champions League on Wednesday! All eyes on BETDAQ Betting Exchange will be on Real Madrid v PSG, but we start the evening with Manchester City hosting Sporting Lisbon. Manchester City have had a busy and eventful fixture list since the first leg of this tie, but this tie was effectively put to bed with City winning 5-0 away from home. We have had some shocks in football, but we’ve never had one like Sporting Lisbon coming back here! The Spurs loss for City has put them under a little pressure in the Premier League title race, they still have a six point advantage but Pep Guardiola will be able to rotate a few of his star players given the score line here. I would keep an eye on the team news for this fixture as we might see some movement in the market here – it’s hard to see anything bar a comfortable City win again but the team news might see big changes in the handicap and goals market as a weaker City side will likely mean less goals. The market can’t see past a City win here though, they are trading as short as 1.16 at the time of writing – you won’t find many shorter prices than that at this stage of the Champions League.
With City so short in the match odds market, we have to look to the side markets for some value. I don’t think there’s any question whether or not City win here, I think it’s just a case of how many goals they score. Sporting have bounced back reasonably well since they 5-0 hammering with three good performances, but there’s such a gulf in class between the sides here it’s hard to put any weight on the form in Portugal. Any Other Home Win (Man City to score four or more and win) is trading 3.0 in the Correct Score market and while I couldn’t put anyone off that, I feel City will also keep a clean sheet here. They have been rock lately apart from the Spurs game, and we saw in the first leg how much City controlled the ball and the game. I can only see them having more of the ball here with home advantage. I’m happy to limit stakes because they are 5-0 up and they might turn into something like a training game, but Both Teams Not To Score looks value at 1.63.
The Ultra Says:
Two points win Both Teams Not To Score at 1.63 with BETDAQ BETTING EXCHANGE.
You can view all markets here -> https://bit.ly/BDQMciLis
● Manchester City won the first leg 5-0 in Portugal, the joint-biggest winning margin away from home in the knockout stages in UEFA Champions League history. The largest first leg deficit to be overturned in the UEFA Champions League is four goals (Paris Saint-Germain 4-0, Barcelona 6-1 in 2016-17).
● Sporting CP have lost all three of their matches in the knockout rounds of the UEFA Champions League, conceding 17 goals in total (5.7 per game). They have conceded 17+ goals in the knockout rounds twice as quickly as the previous worse side (Basel – 6 games).
● Manchester City have won all four of the previous occasions they’ve hosted Portuguese opponents in European competition, scoring 10 goals across the last three: 4-0 v FC Porto and 3-2 v Sporting CP in the 2011-12 UEFA Europa League and 3-1 v FC Porto in the UEFA Champions League last season.
● Sporting CP are winless in their last seven away games against English opposition in European competition (D2 L5), with their last such victory coming against Middlesbrough in the 2004-05 UEFA Cup (3-2). Overall, Sporting CP have only kept one clean sheet in 14 away games at English sides in European competition (0-0 v Arsenal in November 2018).
● Pep Guardiola has won 14 matches of his 21 matches in the knockout stages of the UEFA Champions League with Manchester City (67%), which is many as he won in 26 matches at this stage with Barcelona (54%). In between, he won 8 of 18 with FC Bayern München (44%).
● Sporting CP have failed to keep a clean sheet in any of their last 13 away matches in the UEFA Champions League, conceding 31 goals in the process (2.4 per game). This is already the longest run of away matches without a clean sheet by a Portuguese side in the competition.
● Manchester City have won each of their last six home matches in the knockout stages of the UEFA Champions League, and could tie a record which has been reached on five occasions previously (FC Bayern München – April 2002, Milan – April 2006, Manchester United – March 2009, FC Bayern München – February 2017 and Real Madrid – February 2018).
● Kevin De Bruyne could make his 50th UEFA Champions League appearance for Manchester City in this game (currently on 49). The Belgian midfielder has been directly involved in 27 goals in his previous 49 (10 goals and 17 assists), with only Sergio Agüero and Raheem Sterling (34 each) having more combined goals and assists through 50 appearances for the club in the competition.
● Sporting CP goalkeeper Antonio Adán has conceded 13 goals in the UEFA Champions League this season (excl. own goals), while based on Opta’s expected goals metric the average goalkeeper would have been expected to concede around nine times (9.4). His negative differential of -3.6 is the worst for any goalkeeper in the competition this campaign.
● Riyad Mahrez has scored six UEFA Champions League goals in 2021-22 and needs one more strike to set a record for most goals in a single season in the competition by a Manchester City player.
REAL MADRID V PSG
8pm It’s fixtures like this that makes us love the Champions League. You could say this second leg is set up perfectly after PSG won the first leg 1-0 in Paris. Real Madrid now have home advantage, and with the away goal rule gone it’s still on a knife edge. Of course PSG have the advantage, but Real Madrid come into this game as favourites and they have been banging in the goals for fun lately. This is going to be a fascinating night. PSG dominated the first leg, but Real Madrid set up very negatively to try a draw and they came very close to achieving that too. They held on until the 94th minute, but PSG deserved to win as Real Madrid only created an xG of 0.14. It will be interesting to see what PSG can do now given Real will have to attack more, this game should open up a little and we could see fireworks. I was expecting a very cagey first leg given the circumstances and but this is set up for be an end-to-end cracker if we see an early goal. We might see the tactics completely flip and PSG are the cagey side. We have a very open market heading into this tie, with Real Madrid trading 2.56 and PSG 2.82 at the time of writing. PSG put in a very poor performance at the weekend in France, losing 1-0 to Nice, but they have the league won already given the lead at the top of the table and they would have had full focus on this tie. It was still a very poor performance though, and you couldn’t say that they have been firing this season.
PSG are a hard team to fully get a grip on though because the standard is so low in France, and then all the stars turn up on the big nights like this. It must be hard for them to get fully motivated when you can still win in first gear, and I would expect a big improvement for PSG compared to their domestic form in this game. However, I strongly feel this game falls at the good time for Real Madrid. They were fantastic here at the weekend against Real Sociedad, and they have been creating a huge amount of chances at home recently. Even in the 0-0 draw recently away to Villarreal who were playing their best football of the season, they were very unlucky not to win – they created an xG of 2.30 and bossed the game. I’m keen to watch the first 15 minutes here, because if we see an early goal I’d be very happy to back over 4.5 or 5.5 goals given the fireworks I expect, but if PSG set up very cagey than I can see Real seeing most of the ball and winning. Messi has been so average in France this year, but maybe he can come alive here. I still don’t like this PSG set up and don’t feel it works – the stars just don’t gel together well in my opinion, and I’m happy to take the 2.56 on Real. They are in superb form at the moment and PSG seem there for the taking.
The Ultra Says:
Three points win Real Madrid to beat PSG at 2.56 with BETDAQ BETTING EXCHANGE.
You can view all markets here -> https://bit.ly/BDQRmaPsg
● Real Madrid have been eliminated from nine of their last 10 knockout ties in the UEFA Champions League when losing the first leg, with the exception being a 3-2 aggregate victory over VfL Wolfsburg in the 2015-16 quarter-final.
● Paris Saint-Germain have been eliminated from three of their eight UEFA Champions League knockout ties when winning the first leg – only Barcelona (4) and Real Madrid (6) have been eliminated in this fashion more often.
● Real Madrid have only lost one of the previous five games when hosting Paris Saint-Germain in European competition (0-1 in the Cup Winners’ Cup in 1993-94), while picking up victories in the other four. They are unbeaten in the three meetings in this run that have come in the UEFA Champions League (W2 D1).
● Paris Saint-Germain have won just one of their last eight UEFA Champions League away games against Spanish opposition (D2 L5), however that victory did come on their most recent trip, beating Barcelona 4-1 at the Camp Nou in the Round of 16 last season.
● Since we have detailed shot data in the UEFA Champions League (2003-04), there have been just two occasions of Real Madrid failing to register a single shot on target in a match in the competition. Both of these came against PSG – in the group stages in September 2019, and in the first leg of this season’s last 16 tie.
● Paris Saint-Germain are winless in their last four away matches in the UEFA Champions League (D2 L2). They last had a longer run without a win on the road in the competition between September 2000 and October 2012 (10 games).
● Karim Benzema has scored 12 goals in his last 11 UEFA Champions League home games for Real Madrid. Overall, he’s netted 64 goals for the Spanish side in the competition, behind only Cristiano Ronaldo (105) and Raúl (66).
● PSG’s Kylian Mbappé has been directly involved in 18 goals in his last 13 appearances in the UEFA Champions League, scoring 13 goals and assisting a further five. His winning strike in the first leg against Real Madrid was his latest goal in the competition to date, coming after 93 minutes and 14 seconds.
● PSG’s Lionel Messi has failed to score in his last 695 minutes of action against Real Madrid in all competitions, since scoring for Barcelona in May 2018. The Argentine had his penalty saved against them in the first leg, which was his fifth penalty failure in the UEFA Champions League (from 23 taken, excluding shootouts).
● Since his debut in the competition in September 2013, PSG’s Neymar has provided more assists than any other player in the UEFA Champions League (27). Six of these have been for Kylian Mbappé – including one in the first leg – which is his most for a single teammate in the competition.