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Soccer Weekly Free Picks, Predictions Odds

 
  • by Toby Maxtone-Smith
  • August 6, 2020
  • VegasInsider.com

European Top-Flight
Picks and Predictions

VegasInsider.com soccer expert Toby Maxtone-Smith provides his Best Bets every weekend for VegasInsider.com.

He's locked and loaded with four weekend picks, focusing on the UEFA Champions League round of 16.

UEFA Champions League

Manchester City vs. Real Madrid
Juventus vs. Lyon
Barcelona vs. Napoli
Bayern Munich vs. Chelsea

UEFA Champions League Best Bets

Manchester City vs. Real Madrid

  • Date: Friday, 3:00 p.m. ET (CBS Sports Network)
  • Tip: Manchester City to win at 8/11

Manchester City endured a tricky start in their first leg away at Real Madrid all the way back before lockdown, but they grew into the game and scored a vital, deserved victory that puts them in poll position to qualify. Their post-lockdown form has been inconsistent, and their loss to Arsenal in the FA Cup semi-final once again highlighted the idea that they are not great in big games. But they look a good bet here at 8/11.

Real are without captain Sergio Ramos after his red card in the first leg. City will give chances away, but with Real needing to score at least twice there will be space for City on the counter-attack. They are a better team than Real and should qualify.

Juventus vs. Lyon

  • Date: Friday, 3:00 p.m. ET (CBS All Access)
  • Tip: Lyon to qualify at 1/1

Juventus managed to win Serie A but it was an unconvincing title win. They only managed to win two of their last eight games and their task to get through here is tricky. Lyon won the first leg 1-0 at home, and facing Juve at an empty stadium could be a big advantage for Rudi Garcia’s side, who will look to keep it tight and hope to poach an away goal. They can do that as well - their pacy attacking trio of Moussa Dembélé, Memphis Depay and Houssem Aouar is extremely talented.

Juventus have been relying a lot on Cristiano Ronaldo this season, and while he may have the last laugh, Lyon’s price is big enough to justify backing them.

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Barcelona vs. Napoli

  • Date: Saturday, 3:00 p.m. ET (CBS Sports Network)
  • Tip: Barcelona to win at 8/13

Barcelona finally relinquished their grasp on La Liga to Real Madrid this season, but they finished the season reasonably strongly, winning four of their last five. Barcelona have not lost any of their last 35 Champions League matches at the Nou Camp, and despite Barcelona’s off-field problems the odds seem to be overrating a Napoli side that got nowhere near qualifying for the Champions League in Serie A.

Key defender Kostas Manolas is missing for Napoli, who struggle away in Europe. Barcelona should get the job done.

Bayern Munich vs. Chelsea

  • Date: Saturday, 3:00 p.m. ET (CBS All Access)
  • Tip: Bayern Munich to win to nil at 13/8

Chelsea are 50/1 to qualify after a 3-0 loss at Stamford Bridge in the first leg, and this match is not likely to be particularly exciting. Chelsea’s squad is ravaged by injury, and they would probably rather forfeit the game and have an extra week off.

Bayern are likely to go strong in order to get their players match fit after a fairly long absence without football, and this could be a long night for what will be a young Chelsea side. There was a huge gulf in quality between these teams in the first leg, and another comfortable Bayern win looks likely.


  
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