Champions League 3rd Round (Semifinals) First Legs. Betting tips and previews of the most interesting matches scheduled on Tuesday 26 July.
Champions League Semifinals tips & preview
Previews, betting tips and lineups for the 3rd round of Champions League Qualifiers matches scheduled on Tuesday 26 July.
BATE Borisov, Belarusian team with a decent past experience in Champions League Group Stage, meet Dundalk. BATE had the best vs this irish team exactly one year
ago (2-1 win in Belarus and 0-0 draw in Ireland).
BATE are favourite and need a win in this first leg in order to reach the next and final round.
Belarusian side has kept a clean sheet for the last 7 home matches. We expect to see the hosts prevail here, considering also that BATE has kept the same team of last season exception made for the transfer of Hleb and generally speaking, have a more skilled squad compared to the irish side.
The Bulgarian League Champions vs the serbian Red Star Beograd, a club with a long history that has disappointed a lot in European competitions in the recent past.
Ludogorets Razgrad, instead, were born only in 1991 but have already taken part to the Champions League Group Stage (Season 2013/2014).
Bulgarian side defeated Mladost in both legs with an overall 5-0, while Red Star had the best vs Valletta, a modest Maltese club, but in both matches, serbian side conceded a goal.
Defensive lacks emerged also in the first Serbian League round when they conceded two goals at home vs Napredak.
Ludogorets have a good team: the goalie is the solid Stoyanov, the defensive leader is the romanian Moti and in the midfield the captain Dyakov leads others with his experience. The attacking phase relies on the quality of Marcelinho ready to serve the very fast Lukoki and Jonathan Cafu on the sides and the striker is another romanian, Keseru.
We see home team favourite here.
Partizani Tirana have been added to the current Champions League Qualifiers only after the exclusion of another albanian club, Skenderbeu guilty of some violation of rules and
they have been lucky already to reach the 3rd round: they defeated Debrecen at penalty kicks after a double 1-1 resulted from the 2 legs. The hero of that night for Albanian side was their
goalie, Hoxha who blocked 3 penalties and scored another with a chip shot...Impressive!
Apart from the nice stories we football fans all love, here we choose the opponents: Red Bull Salzburg have surely a more experienced and skilled squad. They have been dominating their national league for years but they have never taken part to Champions League Final Stage and maybe this is the right season to achieve such a prestigious goal.
In our opinion, the austrian team, sponsored by Red Bull, will use the wings to fly away Albania with a win and secure then the access to the final round already in this 1st leg.
Sparta Praha have not played a Champions League match since 2005 and now their adventure begins in the 3rd Round, the second to last. Sparta
made a great Europa League campaign in the last season, when they were defeated by Villareal in the Quarterfinals.
The experience gained will probably be decisive in the imminent clash vs Steaua Bucuresti. Indeed the Romanian side is undergoing an awful period probably accentuated by the club's economical problems: in the last decade, this club has lost that huge importance gained in the '80 when they played two Champions League Finals, winning one of them.
In our opinion the hosts' higher skills and their tactical organization will be decisive.
Viktoria Plzen are looking for their third qualification to the final stage, already obtained twice out of three attempts.
They have a new coach, Roman Pivarnik, but that should not represent a problem for the hosts because the squad is basically the same of the previous season. This team has 7 internationals: the czech Limbersky, Hubnik, Kolar and Petrzela plus the slovakian Duris, Kozacik and Hrosovsky. The club's management relies a lot on the European competition and indeed the arrival of the striker Marek Bakos is a clear signal.
Qarabag has already showed to struggle a lot when playing on the road especially in European matches. The striker Reynaldo is a doubt and will probably play only part of the second half. Home team clearly favourite.
BATE BORISOV - DUNDALK
HOME WIN (1.40); BATE DOUBLE CHANCE + UNDER 3.5 (1.38)
LUDOGORETS RAZGRAD - RED STAR
LUDOGORETS DOUBLE CHANCE (1.25) ; OVER 1.5 (1.33)
PARTIZANI TIRANA - RED BULL SALZBURG
AWAY WIN (1.45)
SPARTA PRAHA - STEAUA BUCURESTI
HOME WIN (1.61)
VIKTORIA PLZEN - QARABAG
HOME WIN (1.46)
ROSTOV - ANDERLECHT
ANDERLECHT DOUBLE CHANCE + UNDER 3.5 (1.95)
AJAX - PAOK THESSALONIKI
BOTH TEAMS TO SCORE (2.25)
DINAMO ZAGREB - DINAMO TBLISI
HOME WIN (1.40)
SHAKHTAR DONETSK - YOUNG BOYS BERN
SHAKHTAR DOUBLE CHANCE + OVER 1.5 (1.50)