Put a pin in them, these fixtures are done. Ok, that might be a little melodramatic but I think we know who the finalists for the Champions League are this season. Juventus and Real Madrid may not have built up unassailable leads but the chances of Monaco or Atletico making a comeback are decidedly slim.
I’m a fan of the occasional big bet but even I wouldn’t touch Monaco to qualify at 21, or even better, Atletico Madrid to qualify at 26 (both with bet365).
I’ve enjoyed watching Monaco play this season and it’s a shame to think that the manager and 4/5 players are likely to leave this summer. Of course, if the funds from that little lot are invested well then it could be the platform for another push but somehow I doubt it will. I didn’t expect Monaco to get this far but when they were drawn against Juventus I was sure this would be where it ended. The Monaco attack is fantastic but against Juventus it was blunted as they seemed to choose a tactic that played right into Juve’s hands, namely pumping long balls into the box that the Juve defenders could mop up with ease.
I hope that Leonardo Jardim comes up with an alternative strategy for the next game as that one clearly did not work.
Monaco needs goals, 3 of them in fact, and while that is possible with this Monaco attack, it looks improbable against this Juventus defence. In all honesty, I think this game is more likely to go in favour of Juve. Monaco will push for goals and Juve will pick them off at will. You can pick up a straight Juve win for 1.65 with both BetVictor and bet365 right now and I’d say there’s some value there. I’m also very tempted by a Juve To Win To Nil bet at 2.88 with Ladbrokes as Monaco are forced to go on the attack. That leads me to my official bet for this one. I think Juventus will win but I think they will be smart about it and realize that conceding goals could mean losing the game. Instead, they’ll sit tight in this one and the scoreline should be low. I’m taking Under 2.5 goals at 2.13 with Pinnacle.
In the Wednesday night game, we will see Atletico Madrid run out against their city neighbors Real Madrid in the last ever Champions League night at the Vicente Calderon stadium. Atletico are due to move into a new stadium next season and they will be determined to give the old stadium one last night of celebration. Atletico knows they’re up against it so they will have to attack and this could be a very entertaining match with plenty of goals. I’m going for Over 2.5 Goals in this one at odds of 1.85 with Pinnacle.
If things go as expected then we’ll see one of the world’s greatest players up against one of the world’s most popular. In the matchup between Ronaldo and Buffon, my money is on the old guy.