CHAMPIONS LEAGUE: 6th ROUND - GROUPS E AND F

In this post betting tips and previews of the sixth round of Champions League group stage matches. Groups A and B:  Bayer Leverkusen - Barcelona, Roma - BATE Borisov, Dinamo Zagreb - Bayern Munich and Olympiakos - Arsenal.

In this post betting tips and previews of the sixth round of Champions League group stage matches. Groups A and B:

Bayer Leverkusen - Barcelona, Roma - BATE Borisov, Dinamo Zagreb - Bayern Munich and Olympiakos - Arsenal.



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BAYER LEVERKUSEN - BARCELONA

 

 

TEAM NEWS

 

Bayer Leverkusen

  • Kyriakos Papadopoulos returns from suspension for the hosts and is likely to come into the starting XI at the heart of the defence alongside Jonathan Tah.
  • Karim Bellarabi is set to partner Javier Hernandez in attack in a 4-4-2 formation.
  • Charles Aranguiz, Tin Jedvaj and Seung-Woo Ryu are all sidelined, while Lars Bender is still suffering with an ankle problem.
Barcelona

  • Dani Alves misses out through suspension, with Adriano expected to come into the starting XI at right-back.
  • Luis Enrique is without injured quartet Rafinha, Douglas, Jeremy Mathieu and Sergi Roberto, while Gerard Pique and Andres Iniesta will be rested for the European champions.
  • Javier Mascherano could start in midfield, while Neymar, Luis Suarez and Lionel Messi are set to lead the attack.

 

 

 

PREDICTION

 

  • Bayer Leverkusen's progression to the next round of the Champions League is in their hands, but they need a positive result and to hope results go their way elsewhere. The Bundesliga side, though, have lost their last six meetings with Barcelona, conceding 18 goals in the process.
  • Barcelona will name a weakened XI for their trip to Germany having already guaranteed top spot in Group E. The Blaugrana have won 14 of their last 16 Champions League encounters and will want to end the group stages on a high having taken 13 of a possible 15 points thus far.
  • The hosts will push for the the result they need to progress, but could come undone on Wednesday night.

 

 

AWAY WIN (2.00 Matchbook)

OVER 2.5 (1.62 Matchbook)

 

 

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ROMA - BATE BORISOV

 

 

TEAM NEWS

 

Roma

  • Roma manager Rudi Garcia is without injured quintet Kevin Strootman, Elio Capradossi, Francesco Totti, Gervinho and Mohamed Salah.
  • Iago Falque and Juan Iturbe are set to flank Edin Dzeko in attack.
  • Garcia, meanwhile, can name his strongest midfield in Miralem Pjanic, Daniele De Rossi and Radja Nainggolan.
BATE Borisov

  • Aleksandr Yermakovich's has the luxury of a fully fit squad to choose from ahead of the trip to Roma.
  • He could name the same starting XI as the one that secured a 1-1 draw with Bayer Leverkusen in the competition last time out.

 

 

PREDICTION

 

  • Roma must secure a positive result and better Bayer Leverkusen's performance in Barcelona if they are to qualify for the next round of the Champions League. The Serie A side, however, have struggled of late, failing to win any of their last four competitive matches.
  • BATE haven't played a competitive fixture since the end of November and could suffer from a lack of match fitness. The visitors have lost their two away Champions League meetings this campaign, though are in with a slim chance of securing second spot in Group E.

 

 

HOME WIN (1.38, Sporting Bet)

 

 

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DINAMO ZAGREB - BAYERN MUNICH

 

 

TEAM NEWS

 

Dinamo Zagreb

  • Dinamo Zagreb will finish the group stages at home without Gordon Schildenfeld and Armin Hodzic.
  • Marko Rog is a booking away from suspension.
Bayern Munich

  • Franck Ribery capped his return to first-team action after 9 months out with a goal at the weekend and he could continue his recovery with more minutes here.
  • Arjen Robben, David Alaba and Douglas Costa missed their first league defeat of the season through injury and may not be risked here. Thiago, Mario Gotze and Juan Bernat will still be missing, while Holger Badstuber is suspended.
  • The likes of Sebastian Rode and Kingsley Coman could also get a run out here with top spot guarenteed. Jerome Boateng is one yellow card away from a suspension so he may not be risked here.

 

 

 

PREDICTION

 

  • Bayern Munich are guarenteed to top the group and can afford to give fringe players some minutes here. They come off the back of their first league defeat of the season and Pep Guardiola will be demanding an immediate response, which could make this a high scoring game.
  • Dinamo have now lost six of their last 13 matches in all competitions, having gone into matchday 2 of the Champions League 45 games unbeaten. They have also only kept 1 clean sheet in their last 15 matches. This could be high scoring.

 

 

 

AWAY WIN (1.33, PaddyPower)

AWAY WIN HANDICAP (-1.0)  (2.00, PaddyPower)

 

 


 

OLYMPIAKOS - ARSENAL

 

 

TEAM NEWS

 

Olympiakos

  • The Greek side will be without Giannis Maniatis and Andreas Gianniotis for the reception of Arsenal, while top goal scorer Felipe Pardo (3) is a doubt.
  • Alberto Botía is pushing for more minutes here after featuring against Panthrakikos at the weekend, which was his first game since straining his right hamstring on matchday 4 of the Champions League.
  • Esteban Cambiasso and Omar Elabdellaoui will incur a ban with their next booking.
Arsenal

  • Arsenal will be without a number of first-team players here for their decisive Champions League group match. The loss of Santi Cazorla, Francis Coquelin and Alexis Sanchez is particuarly damaging to their chances here.
  • The Gunners are reportedly training Calum Chambers to play in front of the back four in the absence of Mikel Arteta and Coquelin and he could replace Mathieu Flamini in the starting XI here.
  • Theo Walcott is pushing for a start after coming in on their 3-1 win over Sunderland at the weekend, but he could be saved when the game is stretched late on.
  • Joel Campbell and Mesut Özil are both within a booking of a ban.

 

 

PREDICTION

 

  • The outcome of this match will decide who joins Bayern Munich in the knockout stage of the competition. Arsenal are 3 points behind their Greek opponents and need to better the reverse fixture (a 3-2 defeat) to qualify, otherwise they will drop into the Europa League.
  • Injuries to several key players will make this game even harder for Arsene Wenger's men, but they are able to score a lot of goals in quick succession which means they should be fancied here.
  • Olympiakos, on the other hand, have scored 11 goals in their last three games, through nine different scorers. They are also the only team in the Greek Super League still with a 100 per cent record having won all 12 of their domestic matches. There will be a hostile atmosphere, but Arsenal should fancy their chances of overturning the deficit here.

 

 

AWAY WIN (2.05, Betfair)
ARSENAL DOUBLE CHANCE + OVER 1.5 (1.82, Betfair)

 

 

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