With just one round to go in the group stage of the 2017-18 UEFA Champions League, over half of the groups are still yet to decide their two representatives in the kockout stage, which will make for a very exciting week of games this Wednesday and Thursday morning. We take a look at some of the key clashes in Week 6 of the Champions League and give our betting tips below.
Chelsea have already punched their ticket to the knockout stage of the Champions League, but their final position in the group is not yet secured. They currently sit on top of the table with 10 points with Roma and Madrid trailing on eight and six points respectively. Atletico can still qualify here, but they’ll need to beat Chelsea at Stamford Bridge and hope that the winless Qarabag FK can defeat Roma, an unlikely scenario.
If Atletico do get the win, however, and Roma also beat Qarabag, then Chelsea will see themselves fall to second on the table, which means they will likely get a harder matchup in the knockout stage. They still have a lot to play for here and will want to end the stage with a home win to take momentum into the knockouts.
Atletico Madrid are in the mix at the top of the La Liga table, and due to needing the unlikely scenario of Qarabag beating Roma, thye might switch some of their focus to the domestic competition. Through six games in all competitions, the record between these two teams stands at two wins apiece with two draws. Tough game to call here but Chelsea should only need a result to claim top spot in the group with a +6 goal difference advantage over Roma. We like them to hold firm here and secure a draw.
Second spot in Group A is still up for grabs here as Manchester United host CSKA Moscow and Benfica host FC Basel. Manchester United top the group with 12 points through five games while Basel and Moscow trail, both with nine points. Basel have the easier matchup of the two trailing sides, so should be favourites to advance here, but anything can happen.
Manchester have won their last four Premier League games and would look like a top contender in the domestic competition if not for the utter dominance of Manchester City early in the season. Paul Pogba and Zlatan Ibrahimovic have returned from injury, adding to the Red Devils ridiculous depth.
Tough game to call here as Moscow have so much to play for and Manchester United can only relinquish top spot with a massive loss, which is unlikely. In Moscow we would probably give them a massive chance here but its hard to look past Machester United. Moscow will be playing an aggressive style of football as they hunt the win which should provide a high scoring game.
Group E might be the tightest race of all heading into the final day’s play. Liverpool host Spartak Moscow and Sevilla host Maribor with three of the four teams still a chance to finish on top of the group. Liverpool currently lead the group with nine points, and are likely safe from being knocked out with a +10 goal difference. Sevilla and Spartak Moskva have eight and six points respectively.
A draw here will secure 1st place for Liverpool, but with their attacking nature in the EPL over the last few weekends, we think they will be playing for the win here against a Moscow side that has been shaky by their lofty standards in the RPL. Liverpool decimated Brighton in their latest EPL game, scoring five times on their way to a big win with the attacking trio of Coutinho, Roberto Firmino and Mohamen Salah in hot form.
Liverpool are unbeaten in the Champions League against Spartak Moscow, with their last game at Anfield ending in a 5-0 win for the Reds. We think they should be too strong for the Russian side again here as they look to secure the top spot in the group.
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