Crunch time is approaching in the 2018/19 Champions League group stages; the race to qualify for the knockout rounds is heating up.
Only two teams from each group can advance to the next stage of the competition and most are still difficult to predict.
Both Manchester clubs are in action tonight ahead of Sunday’s derby at the Etihad Stadium – and both will be expecting positive results.
Without further ado, let’s get down to our 10/1 four-fold ahead of Wednesday’s Champions League football.
VALENCIA vs Young Boys
Valencia were comprehensively outplayed by Young Boys less than a fortnight ago but the La Liga outfit can get back to winning ways here.
On paper, the hosts are superior in almost every department and Young Boys may struggle to cope with the daunting Mestalla atmosphere.
The Swiss side will be hopeful of a positive result though – three points in this clash will give the visitors a great chance of snatching a Europa League berth.
Young Boys showed plenty of promise against Manchester United but crumbled after falling behind. Keeping this one close will be a priority for the away side.
1/2 may look short but Valencia should go for the jugular. With the chance to climb above Manchester United into second, the Spanish side must claim three points.
TIP: Valencia to win @ 1/2
PREDICTED SCORE: Valencia 2-0 Young Boys (Priced at 13/2 with 888sport)
BAYERN MUNICH vs AEK Athens
The Niko Kovac experiment has NOT gone to plan. The Allianz Arena faithful are disgruntled after a slow start to the season by Bayern Munich’s high standards.
Currently third in the Bundesliga table and second in their Champions League group, Bayern need a convincing performance here to silence some of the doubters.
AEK Athens held Bayern for 60 minutes before the Bavarians notched a quickfire double last time out – and the Greek side will be looking to frustrate Kovac’s side once again.
With three defeats so far in the 2018/19 competition, this is going to be difficult to AEK but football is a funny old game. The visitors will give it a good go…
Bayern will dominate the lion’s share of possession and 8/15 for over 7.5 home corners is a decent bet. Expect the German champions to spend most of the game camped in AEK’s half.
TIP: Over 7.5 home corners @ 8/15
PREDICTED SCORE: Bayern Munich 3-0 AEK Athens (Priced at 5/1 with 888sport)
Juventus vs MANCHESTER UNITED
Juventus are six points clear at the top of Serie A and the Old Lady have been particularly dominant on home soil, winning nine of their last 10 games in all competitions.
Max Allegri’s side are genuine contenders to win the Champions League this season and it wouldn’t be a huge surprise to see Juventus run riot on Wednesday evening.
Meanwhile, the Red Devils have the small matter of a Manchester Derby looming and Jose Mourinho will want to maintain momentum ahead of Sunday’s clash at the Etihad.
United have been solid enough since losing at home to Juventus, winning four of their last five Premier League games – the only blemish being that 2-2 draw away at Chelsea.
Juventus were dominant at Old Trafford but United could spring a shock here. 29/20 for the visitors to avoid defeat is my top tip ahead of this one.
TIP: Man United to win OR draw @ 29/20
PREDICTED SCORE: Juventus 1-1 Man United (Priced at 6/1 with 888sport)
MANCHESTER CITY vs SHAKHTAR DONETSK
This is a tough one to call. With Sunday’s big domestic clash on the horizon, Pep Guardiola may wring the changes for City – but he cannot afford to take Shakhtar lightly.
The Blues are sitting pretty at the top of Group F and three points here could be enough to secure passage through to the knockout stages.
Shakhtar will need plenty of luck to secure a positive result here; the Ukrainian side hardly had a touch of the ball in the first half two weeks ago.
After being comprehensively outplayed at home, Shakhtar may batten down the hatches on Wednesday evening. Damage limitation could be the way to go for the visitors.
Despite City’s obvious firepower, the under 3.5 goals mark at 19/20 carries plenty of appeal. The hosts should dominate but City may go into training mode if comfortable at 70 minutes.
TIP: Under 3.5 goals @ 19/20
PREDICTED SCORE: Man City 3-0 Shakhtar (Priced at 27/5 with 888sport)
*Odds subject to change - correct at time of writing*