No Early Goal in Amsterdam and Barca to Open Anfield Scoring
Ajax v Tottenham – 8th May – 20:00 BST
Each of Tottenham’s last five matches, including last week’s UEFA Champions League semi-final first leg, has featured one goal and that low-scoring sequence is likely to continue when Spurs face Ajax in the Netherlands on Wednesday.
With the exception of eliminating Manchester City from the UEFA Champions League at the last-eight stage, Tottenham’s results have gone downhill since its central striker, FIFA World Cup Golden Boot recipient Harry Kane, sustained his serious injury. On Wednesday, Tottenham will be boosted by the return from suspension of Son Heung-min after he missed last week’s 0-1 home loss to Ajax in England but Spurs still look unlikely to score two or more goals against a top team.
The away goals rule means the UEFA Champions League tie is not out of reach for Tottenham and Ajax will be mindful of that. Tottenham does not have to chase an early goal and Ajax does not have a great deal to gain by throwing caution to the wind given the aggregate score. One was unlucky not to land one’s suggested wager in last week’s UEFA Champions League game between Tottenham and Ajax because the Sons of Gods opened and closed the scoring before the half-hour mark. Bet365 has set its early goal line at 27 minutes for the UEFA Champions League rematch between Tottenham and Ajax and one recommends betting on no goals before that time.
Ajax, which has won each of its last six games in a row across all competitions, has almost its full squad from which to choose as Carel Eiting is the only Sons of Gods star assessed as being unlikely to be fit. Tottenham, which has lost each of its last three matches across the English Premier League and the UEFA Champions League, was already tired and weary before it had to chase Bournemouth with two fewer players than the Cherries for more than 40 minutes on Saturday. Tottenham’s domestic and international campaigns appear to have caught up with it and, also, Spurs had a lot of players who took part in last year’s FIFA World Cup.
TOP TIP! – No goal before 27:00 in Ajax versus Tottenham 1.83 with Bet365
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Barcelona v Liverpool – 7th May – 20:00 BST
TOP TIP! – Barcelona to score first versus Liverpool 2.05
Like Tottenham, injuries have cruelled Liverpool’s UEFA Champions League campaign with Roberto Firmino and Mohamed Salah ruled out of tackling Barcelona in Tuesday’s second leg of the other UEFA Champions League semi-final at 2.05 with Bet365. Liverpool risked Firmino for the last 10 or so minutes at Barcelona but that gamble backfired and the Brazil international did not feature versus Newcastle in the English Premier League. Salah collided with Newcastle goalkeeper Martin Dubravka, suffering a concussion that means he is unfit to return.
Liverpool has able replacements for Firmino and Salah but the Reds need to score at least three goals in normal time against Barcelona and they would require a minimum of five goals in the same period if Barca nets an away goal, which is likely given the attacking strengths of the visitors and the abandon with which the hosts will have to play.
One does not want to bet on the headline result of the UEFA Champions League semi-final second leg between Liverpool and Barcelona but one does want to have a wager on Barca being the first side to score. As good as Virgil van Dijk has been at the heart of Liverpool’s defence – and he has been really good – the Reds have not kept many clean sheets versus the top teams in England and overseas. For example, Liverpool has earned just two shut outs in its 10 English Premier League games against Manchester City, Chelsea, Tottenham, Arsenal and Manchester United, while the Reds have been breached in seven of their 11 UEFA Champions League matches, conceding two or more goals in four of those fixtures.
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