Multiple bets are not one’s idea of smart punting play in most instances but is there anything wrong with putting all this week’s three UEFA Champions League shorties into an accumulator that pays a fair bit greater than even money?
Yes, one knows that three football games equals 27 possible results – three to the power of three, something that any self-respecting punter should know – but one cannot see anything other than wins for Bayern Munchen, Porto and Real Madrid in their UEFA Champions League home matches versus Shakhtar Donetsk, Basel and Schalke respectively.
One attempt, albeit on target, was all that Shakhtar Donetsk mustered in its UEFA Champions League home game against the might of Bayern Munchen three weeks ago. Bayern Munchen did not, by its high standards, produce a quality performance but still Shakhtar Donetsk failed to make serious in-roads, forcing zero corner kicks and testing away goalkeeper Manuel Neuer with one only effort. The UEFA Champions League rules are such that Shakhtar Donetsk must score in Germany to have a chance of knocking out Bayern Munchen without relying upon a 0-0 extra-time draw and penalty competition victory. Also, the UEFA Champions League rules are such that Bayern Munchen cannot afford any complacency because, if it gifted a lead to Shakhtar Donetsk, it would have to score at least two goals in return, which may prove somewhat problematic.
The UEFA Champions League is the primary focus for Bayern Munchen now that it is 11 points clear of Wolfsburg at the top of the German Bundesliga ladder so one cannot see Josep Guardiola’s talented team being anything less than 100 per cent switched on – that is bad news for Shakhtar Donetsk.
Statistically speaking, Porto’s 1-1 UEFA Champions League draw at Basel three weeks ago was even more one-sided than the match between Shakhtar Donetsk and Bayern Munchen. Porto fell behind to Basel’s first – and last – attempt on target in the 11th minute before taking total control of the game, forcing nine corner kicks, having seven attempts on target and possessing the ball for 61% of the time. It was only fair when Porto equalised with 11 minutes remaining.
Basel’s concession of an away goal to Porto means that it must find the back of the net at least once during normal time of the UEFA Champions League last-16 second leg in Portugal to have a chance of reaching the quarter-finals. That sets up the match perfectly for Porto, which can let Basel do the donkey work and hit it on the counter attack.
Porto boasts a formidable home record – for example, it has won each of its last seven games across all competitions in front of its own fans – and clean sheets are not something in which Basel specialises, particularly on its travels and even in the second-class Swiss tournaments that it graces.
There is a street-corner tip doing the rounds for Schalke to upset Real Madrid in their UEFA Champions League last-16 tie but one cannot see that happening. Real was the better side in the UEFA Champions League last-16 first leg in Germany three weeks ago and, as is the case with the Porto-Basel clash, the second leg sets up perfectly for the favourite. Schalke has to score a minimum of two goals during normal time at the Santiago Bernabeu and it is not going to do that sitting back on the halfway line. Schalke must attack Real Madrid in Madrid and usually that is a recipe for tears.
With Bayern Munchen, Porto and Real Madrid trading at UEFA Champions League last-16 second-leg win odds of around -556 , -200 and -400 respectively, one can back the treble at +122 with Betfred, and similar prices elsewhere. Betting in such a manner is preferable to trying to predict the UEFA Champions League match between Chelsea and Paris Saint-Germain correctly.
Bayern, Porto, Real Madrid treble
10th March 19:45 GMT
Where to Bet: Betfred
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