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Champions League Tips
The Champions League is back and as Europe's elite teams head back to the pitch fans will also be allowed back in stadiums to see all of the games live. Throughout the season at Bet UK we’ll have all the Champions League betting tips alongside the top betting markets for every game and the outright winner of the competition so you’ll never miss a game.
UEFA Champions League Matchday 1 Preview
Europe's premier football competition makes a welcome return this week with the cream of the continent beginning the quest to get to Wembley next June and the chance to displace Manchester City as kings of Europe. There are 16 games across Tuesday and Wednesday in the Champions League and we've picked out some of the highlights and possible results to look out for.
Champions League Tips: Tuesday 19th September
Milan welcome Toon Army back into the big time
Newcastle are back in the Champions League for the first time in two decades and Magpies have been handed a tough assignment in Group F alongside Paris St-Germain, Borussia Dortmund and AC Milan. It will mean an instant return to the San Siro for Sandro Tonali, who left Milan to head to England this summer.
Eddie Howe's side got a welcome home win over Brentford on Saturday, snapping a run of three losses, but this is going to be a tough start against a side that went all the way to the semi-finals last season. After opening up in Serie A with three straight wins, Milan were thumped 5-1 by rivals Inter on Saturday.
They will know that hopes of getting to the Champions League knockouts will likely rest on taking care of business against Newcastle and they can get the three points.
Bhoys may come unstuck on the road
Celtic's record on the road in the Champions League is fairly abysmal.
Brendan Rodgers did manage to get a win in Belgium against Anderlecht during his first stint as boss with the Scottish champions but, that aside, the Bhoys remain welcome visitors to most places.
The Glasgow side will have been relatively pleased to plunder Feyenoord from the top seeds, but an opening trip to Rotterdam is still a tough ask.
The recent win over Rangers at Ibrox was a game low in quality and Celtic appear to have regressed from the side that Ange Postecoglou had built.
First time around Rodgers was on the end of some hammerings in Europe and Feyenoord may ensure his second stint starts with defeat.
Wins for City, Barcelona and Porto?
Man City begin the defence of this trophy by welcoming FK Crvena Zvezda to the Etihad and Pep Guardiola's side should find that a routine launchpad.
Similar sentiments for his former side Barcelona as they host Antwerp.
Shakhtar Donetsk are Champions League regulars but they perhaps don't have the quality of bygone days and Porto might be able collect all three points when they play in Hamburg.
Champions League Tips: Wednesday 20th September
Kane coming for United
Manchester United were admirers of Harry Kane, but a move from Tottenham to Old Trafford did not materialise and, instead, the England captain swapped North London for Bayern Munich.
Kane has made a good start for the German champions and will be eager to shine against English opposition.
United were all at sea in Saturday's home loss to Brighton and this opening Champions League assignment looks beyond Erik ten Hag's side.
Kane scored a relatively modest five goals in his 19 games against United as a Spurs player and he will fancy his chances of adding to that here.
Bayern can likely stroll to topping Group A - with FC Copenhagen and Galatasaray completing the quartet - and an opening win against the Red Devils looms.
Goals may flow on Wednesday
There are plenty of wide-open ties on paper on Wednesday's Champions League programme and punters can be interested in both teams to score markets as such.
Galatasaray and FC Copenhagen have come through qualifying to get this far and both teams scored in both of the Turks clashes with Molde in the previous round. The Danes can hit the net in Istanbul. The clash of Benfica and Salzburg is another game that has goals written all over it, while Arsenal and PSV Eindhoven as well as Sevilla and Lens are other games that could contribute to Wednesday's round of games being high scoring.
Our Matchday 1 Treble:
- AC Milan to beat Newcastle
- Feyenoord to beat Celtic
- Bayern Munich to beat Manchester United
*Odds correct at time of writing
Champions League Group Stage Predictions
Manchester United have been pitted against Bayern Munich and Harry Kane in the Champions League group stage draw.
The Red Devils were linked with Kane through the summer, but they’ll face his side - the second-favourites to lift the trophy - twice this autumn.
Elsewhere, Newcastle have been handed a difficult group, while there were kinder draws for both Manchester City and Arsenal.
Group A: United outsiders against Bayern
Manchester United landed one of the trickiest possible matchups in the group stage draw, being paired with Bayern Munich. The German giants have been made 21/4 second-favourites to lift the famous trophy after their spending this summer.
Thomas Tuchel’s team have been priced at 4/9 to win group A, with United 9/5 for top spot. However, the Red Devils shouldn’t have much problem making it out of the group, as both Galatasaray and Copenhagen aren’t expected to put up too much of a fight for second.
Group B: Arsenal can see off Sevilla
Arsenal are making their return to the Champions League for the first time since losing 10-2 on aggregate to Bayern Munich in 2017. The Gunners look good to progress past the first hurdle, with Europa League winners Sevilla the top seeds in their group.
Sevilla finished midtable in La Liga last term and they’ve made a poor start to the 2023/24 campaign. The Spaniards should be expected to go through with Lens and PSV joining them in Group B, but it’s hard to argue with the Gunners being 4/9 favourites to finish first.
Group C: Can Napoli threaten Real?
Italian champions Napoli won their first five group games a year ago during their stunning start to the campaign. If they’re to repat that start in 2023, then they’ll need to see off Real Madrid - the competition’s most successful side.
Real have been made 4/6 favourites to top Group C, but Napoli are a real threat at 33/20. Both Union Berlin and Sporting Braga are seen as real underdogs, but that could suit the Bundesliga side. Union shocked to make the top four domestically and they’ve strengthened this summer. They could be dark horses with Napoli looking weaker than a year ago.
Group D: Benfica out for revenge
Group D could be one of the most open groups in the competition this year, with top-seeds Benfica taking on last season’s finalists Inter Milan. The pair met in the quarter-finals a year ago, with Inter coming out on top.
However, Benfica beat Juventus to a spot in last season’s group stages, topping that group ahead of PSG. The Portuguese side will also have to contend with Real Sociedad and Salzburg, with the Spanish side in particular a real threat. Sociedad finished fourth in La Liga last term and they’ll be expected to challenge for a last 16 place.
Group E: Celtic are rank outsiders
Celtic have been priced up as 21/2 outsiders to top Group E, having landed Atletico Madrid, Lazio and Feyenoord in their pool. The Dutch champions were the top seeds, but they’re the third favourites against two quality teams.
Atletico have really struggled in this competition in recent years, including finishing bottom of their group a year ago. That could open the door to opposing the 3/5 favourites, with Lazio the biggest threat. Mauricio Sarri’s side were able to climb to second in Serie A last term and the 14/5 shot for first place could surprise their opponents in Europe too.
Group F: Can Newcastle topple European greats?
It’s hard to remember a Champions League group quite as impressive as Group F’s line-up, which is a fitting send-off in the final edition of the competition under the current format.
Newcastle’s return to Europe pits them against French champions PSG, Borussia Dortmund and last season’s semi-finalists AC Milan. While PSG are the early favourites at 23/20, Newcastle have been installed as 12/5 second-favourites to finish top.
However, there has to be concern for Newcastle’s lack of European experience. It’s also harsh to overlook a Milan side that had such an impressive run in Europe last term. The Rossoneri took out Spurs and Napoli on their way to the last four and they’ve spent really well this summer, making them an interesting 18/5 shot.
Group G: City set to coast to last 16
There’s little to fear for Manchester City in the group stage draw, as their toughest opponents are a Leipzig side that they crushed 7-0 in the last 16 earlier this year. City went through 8-1 on aggregate with the German side and they have a brilliant track record against Bundesliga teams over the years.
Crvena Zvezda and Young Boys join the pair in Group G and neither look capable of making a push for the last 16. The two will battle it out for a Europa League spot, while City are massive 1/16 favourites to top the group and ease into the last 16. They remain the frontrunners for the competition just months on from their treble success.
Group H: Porto could shock Barca
Spanish champions Barcelona have been eliminated from this competition at the group stage in each of the last two campaigns. Landing Shakhtar Donetsk and Antwerp suggests they will avoid a similar fate this term, but the Catalans should worry about Porto.
The Dragons missed a golden opportunity to make the last eight when they met Inter Milan earlier this year, with the Portuguese side finishing top of their group last year.
Porto have been in brilliant form domestically for months and they have a knack of excelling in Europe too. They won’t be easy opposition for Barca, so it might be worth opposing the Catalans, who are 21/50 favourites for top spot.
Porto are a 19/10 chance and off the back of their form last year they can’t be ignored.
Bet UK: Champions League Outright Tip
When you look at the sides around the world, there are dozens of quality sides who could make the UEFA Champions League finals and our Champions League predictions feature two main teams, current holders Manchester City and Bayern Munich. Last season their main striker was youngster Jamal Musiala, the youngster performed well but Munich still couldn't score the goals to succeed on all fronts. Now they have Harry Kane, a natural goalscorer at any level, which has pushed them to the favourites position in the betting odds. We believe that they'll match expectations after a poor campaign last time out.
Champions League Predictions: Bayern Munich to win the Tournament
Champions League FAQs
Q. Where is the 2024 Champions League Final?
The 2023/24 Champions League final will be played at Wembley Stadium in London.
Q. What time is the Champions League Final?
The Champions League Final will kick off at 20:00 (BST)
Q. What channel is the Champions League Final on?
The Champions League final will be broadcast in the UK on BT Sport.
Q. What is the format of the Champions League?
The Champions League consists of two stages, the group stages and the knockout stages. During the group stages, the teams drawn in each of the eight groups will play each other twice, the top two teams will progress to the knockout stage and the third-place team move across to the Europa League knockout competition. During the knockout stage of the Champion League, teams will play each other twice with the winner from both legs progressing until only two teams remain in the final.
Q. How does Bet UK pick their Champions League Predictions?
Here at Bet UK, we select all of our Football betting tips using statistical analysis, we take the betting markets available on-site and we review them using statistics of the game, so for the Champions League tips, we'll utilise the information provided from domestic league games and the Champions League fixtures so far as well as our own opinions as Champions League matches can't always be compared to domestic competitions.
Champions League History
Originally titled the 'Coupe des Clubs Champions Européens' (European Champions Cup in French), the UEFA Champions League is a prestigious competition with a decorated history. This competition was originally only opened up to teams who had won their league and was contested in a straight-up knockout format, in contrast to the Group Stage and knockout format we witness today.
The competition was dominated in its early stages by Real Madrid who won all of the first five competitions before being beaten by Barcelona in 1960/61, Barcelona would eventually be defeated by Benfica in the final. This would be Barcelona's only final appearance until 1986 when they also lost to underdogs Steaua București 2-0 on penalties after missing all of their four spot-kicks. In 1997, the rules changed to add runners-up from the most prestigious leagues to the competition and then changed once again in 1999 to add 3rd and 4th placed competitors.
However, this just led to further dominance by stronger leagues, the chances of minnow teams winning the competition have faded with Jose Mourinho's FC Porto being the only winner that hasn't featured from Spain, England or Germany in that period.
22 sides have won the competition in 68 seasons, Spain has the most winners with 19, England second with 14 and Italy in 3rd with twelve. Germany (8), Netherlands (6) and Portugal (4) are the only other nations that have had more than one winner. Meanwhile, France, Romania, Scotland and Yugoslavia have all had one winner. Remarkably, three out of the the last four competitions have all had a club reach the final for the first time, Tottenham Hotspur (2019), Paris Saint Germain (2020) and Manchester City (2021), all lost in their first finals. The last time this happened was in 1975 when five debutants all lost their opening finals, for the same thing to happen last season, we would have needed to see Sporting Lisbon, Red Bull Salzburg, Lille or Villarreal reach the final, which isn't something we'd back in our betting tips.