The UEFA Champions League final will be kicking off at 8.00 pm on Saturday night from the Metropolitano in Madrid. For the second time in the history of the Champions League, there is an all-English final. The previous one was when Man Utd beat Chelsea on penalties in the 2008 Final.
This time around it is Liverpool who will be lining up against Tottenham, who are making their European Cup FInal debut. The odds on Liverpool to beat Tottenham are at 19/20* (Betting Odds were taken from bet365 on May 26th, 2019 at 9:22 p.m.).
* (Betting Odds were taken from bet365 on May 26th, 2019 at 9:22 p.m.)
When you think about it, it has been quite a tough twelve months for Liverpool. Roughly this time last year they were lining up against Real Madrid in the Final of the Champions League. The night didn’t go to plan at all for Jurgen Klopp’s men as they fell to a 3-1 defeat, unravelled by some goalkeeping howlers from Loris Karius.
Then recently, at the end of a brilliant Premier League campaign, where they lost one game all season, they still couldn’t land their first ever EPL title. They were pipped to the post by Manchester City. So will the Reds finally put all of that behind them when they step out against Spurs on Saturday night? The odds on Liverpool to beat Spurs & both teams score is at 11/4 Tottenham v Liverpool Betting Odds*. That’s the way it’s been between them this season.
Liverpool claimed 2-1 victories over Spurs during the Premier League season. In the first one at Anfield, it was Spurs who scored a last minute goal, albeit being too little too late. Then in the reverse fixture at Wembley, Liverpool got a last minute goal to get the victory. That was their ninth win over Spurs in the last fourteen meetings (L1).
So the Reds are well on top from the recent clashes between the two sides. They have, however, never met in a game of such magnitude as this. So does that level the playing field a little bit? Will Liverpool’s recent experience of such a big occasion serve as a key factor in them driving forward to success against a Spurs team who may rightly feel a little overawed by the occasion?
Another reason to lean towards both teams scoring on the night will be because of recent matches between Tottenham and Liverpool having produced goals. Seven of the last eight fixtures between the two teams have seen both teams to score. Five of the last six meetings have gone over 2.5 goals, just as this season’s two Premier League meetings did.
Both teams have scored in each of the last eight Champions League Finals as well, so there’s another trend. Three of the last four Champions League finals have seen at least four goals scored in them. So this isn’t a match which particularly looks as if it is going to be between two teams who are just going to step out in Madrid and shut up shop.
Liverpool have won all but one of their last fourteen games played in all competition, losing the other one. That is an astonishing run of form from them. In that sequence of fourteen fixtures, the Reds scored at least two goals in all but one of them as well. So they certainly finished the season with a massive bang. Incidentally, the one defeat in that sequence was their 3-0 loss at the Camp Nou against Barcelona in their Champions League semi-final. Not even that stopped them though as they won the second leg 4-0.
Spurs didn’t have quite the same impact at the end of their season. In fact, there were times that they look heavy-legged and uninspired. Their Premier League title challenge drastically fell away with a massive slump of form and they ended the season with five defeats in their last eight games played in all competitions (W2 D1). So they are the ones who really have to try and pick themselves up and sort themselves out. They took just one clean sheet in their last eight games as well, not a great stat to have before facing up to a powerful scoring unit like Liverpool.
Liverpool have claimed the European Cup five times before in their history and this will be their ninth Final. It’s such a rich history that they have and it is the third time in the history of having reached consecutive UEFA finals. Jurgen Klopp has created a powerful team and with their head to head form against Spurs, are justifiable favourites. It’s been a dramatic season for both. What more awaits in the finale?
Spurs will be looking to make a strong start on home soil in this UEFA Champions League semi-final tie against Ajax. After back-to-back home wins in the knockout stages over Borussia Dortmund and Manchester City, Spurs have some good home form behind them now.
However, they are taking on an Ajax side who has already caused some major shockwaves in this season’s competition. The odds on Tottenham to beat Ajax are 11/8* (Betting Odds were taken from bet365 on April 28th, 2019 at 6:35 p.m.)
* (Betting Odds were taken from bet365 on April 28th, 2019 at 6:35 p.m.)
Spurs have won their last four European home games. After losing their first home game of this season’s campaign against Barcelona, they responded well to win their next two home fixtures against PSV Eindhoven and Inter-Milan. So that is a good streak of European home form that Tottenham are on right now and they are going to need a positive result out of this one.
This is just the second ever European cup semi-final that Spurs have been in, and the previous one was all the way back in 1961/62. Tottenham lost that tie against Benfica. As mentioned above Spurs have faced Dutch opposition this season as they met PSV Eindhoven in the group stage. Spurs took a 2-1 home win over the Dutch side.
That moved Tottenham onto a six-match undefeated streak of form against Dutch opposition and they have won four of their previous eight home fixtures against Eredivisie teams, losing just the one. In their six previous two-leg at ties against Dutch teams, Spurs have returned a W3 L3 record. Tottenham have broken new ground this season in the Champions League, their round of 16 victory at home over Borussia Dortmund was the first ever victory in the knockout phase of the competition.
Spurs have won eight of their last 10 home fixtures in the Champions League, losing the other two. In their current form across all competitions, Tottenham have actually only picked up five wins in their last 13 played (losing seven). So it hasn’t been great and they will need to pick themselves up as well after a 1-0 Premier League home loss against West Ham on the weekend. That was Tottenham’s first defeat in their new stadium.
Given what they have produced so far in Europe this season Ajax are going to be a threat in London. They have already made history by becoming the first team to have come through three rounds of qualification to have made it all the way to the semifinals. Ajax have only suffered one defeat in their 16 European games this season, winning nine of those. They are such an exciting and well balanced young team and they look pretty fearless.
In the group stage, they earned four points from their two games against Bayern Munich but ended up in second place behind the Germans. That sent Ajax into a round of 16 tie against Real Madrid. Naturally, the Dutch side were underdogs for the tie against the reigning champions. After losing the first leg at home in Amsterdam, Ajax then produced the result of the tournament by claiming a 4-1 away win at the Bernabeu.
That was something special from them and they weren’t done there. They had another powerhouse to go up against in the quarter-finals in the form of Juventus. After a 1-1 home draw, Ajax went to Turin and posted an away win in the second leg to get themselves through. It was a well-deserved victory as well. Ajax have lost just one of their last four games against English opposition and their record in the European Cup/Champions League semi-final matches away from home is W2 D2 L4.
They don’t have great form in England because they have only taken one win from 10 previous visits, losing for the other nine. In two-legged ties against English teams, Ajax are W3 L4 and they have lost each of their last four such European ties. But without question Ajax are full of belief and they are on a fantastic roll at the moment. Just to highlight how far they have come before their win at Real Madrid, Ajax have failed to win seven knockout stage fixtures.
What a night this is going to be in London. Ajax have only lost one of their previous four trips to the capital. Given the away results which they have produced in the previous two knockout stage rounds, there is every reason to believe that they are going to be a threat.
However, on the other side of the page, you have Tottenham with a good run of home success in Europe. This does have the look of being a high-scoring fixture and so the odds-on Tottenham to win & both teams to score is at 15/4 odds* (Betting Odds were taken from bet365 on April 28th, 2019 at 6:35 p.m.)
Manchester City saw their dreams of a quadruple this season take a hit as they were knocked out of the Champions League in midweek by Spurs. Manchester City collected a 4-3 second leg home over the Lilywhites but it wasn’t enough to prevent their exit on away goals.
It was certainly one of the most dramatic matches of the entire season on the domestic or European fronts. What next as the two come back together for a big Premier League clash at the Etihad? The odds on Manchester City beating Spurs against are at 1/4* (betting odds taken from bet365 on April 19th, 2019 at 7:07 pm)
Man City 1/4
* (betting odds taken from bet365 on April 19th, 2019 at 7:07 pm)
The intensity of the night at the Etihad in midweek was something special. It’s probably not going to get replicated in this one. The tension though is going to be high. If Manchester City can win their remaining games of the season then the title will be back in their hands. With Liverpool in such good form in the title race, the Citizens can’t afford to drop the ball.
But the nerves will surely be there. Their exit of the Champions League was disappointing. They looked to have done enough to get through, but when Raheem Sterling’s late strike was ruled out for offside, the City players and boss Pep Guardiola were left deflated. That was a big mental hit that they took against Spurs, who were, once again, excellent against City.
This is where it counts for City. But Guardiola now has a tough job of lifting his players. They start the weekend trailing leaders Liverpool by two points but with a game in hand. ALong with this one against Spurs, in their next league game, the Citizens have to go rivals Manchester United. These two games are going to be the benchmark of their title challenge during the run in.
Manchester City have beaten Liverpool, Arsenal, Chelsea and Manchester United at home this season. That’s no mean feat at all. It is part of an overall home record of W16 D0 L1 that they have taken this season in the top flight. They have averaged over three goals per home game this season as well in the top flight and the Citizens are currently on a seven-match winning streak on home soil now.
Manchester City have scored in all of their home games this term. The difference between this game and midweek’s is that City don’t have to come bolting out of the gates in search of an early goal. They can take their time a bit more which should leave them in better control of things at the back. In this corresponding fixture, last season Manchester City took a 4-1 win over Spurs and they have won six of their last eight home games in the league against the Lilywhites (D1 L1).
Tottenham seem to have figured out Manchester City better than anyone else this season. They were bold in their approach to the midweek meetup. They had no intention of sitting back and letting their defence try and handle things for 90 minutes. They got their rewards because of the pressure they put on the Manchester City backline which made uncharacteristic mistakes.
The star of the Tottenham show once again was Son Heung-Min who has stepped up to the plate once again in the absence of Harry Kane. Spurs have a lot to play for here. A loss and they could easily find themselves outside of the top four at the end of the weekend. The worrying thing for Spurs is their away form.
Tottenham have lost their last four league away games. Two of those were failures in big games against others in the big six, Chelsea and Liverpool, but shock defeats out at Southampton and Burnley in that sequence really saw their road form tumble.
They did still lose at the Etihad in midweek and the problem for Spurs is trying to replicate that kind of performance once again. They probably won’t find City as forgiving at the back.
The midweek meeting was just crazy. However, three of Manchester City’s four home games this season against the other big six have produced at least four goals.
Tottenham do carry an attacking threat and therefore the odds on Man City to win & both teams to score is at 7/5 odds* (betting odds taken from bet365 on April 19th, 2019 at 7:07 pm)
The top three clash between Liverpool and Everton is going to be the big game to look forward to this weekend in the Premier League. This is a game of massive importance as well in both the title race and the race for a top-four finish. Liverpool are 11/20 odds-on to beat Tottenham at Anfield in Sunday’s showdown.
* (betting odds taken from bet365 on March 27th, 2019 at 7:03 pm)
Manchester City will be playing early on Saturday against Fulham so Liverpool will know the state of play at the top of the table before they kick off in this one. If Manchester City beat the Cottagers it means that the Reds will have to produce a win in order to go back to the top. Liverpool start the weekend two points ahead of the Citizens, but the reigning champions have a game in hand over them.
Liverpool do have a wonderful home record this season in the top flight. They are undefeated at Anfield all season and they are on a three-match winning streak there currently. The Reds rattled off 12 goals in their last three home fixtures and they have scored at least three goals in all but one of their last eight at Anfield. It’s been impressive stuff. Their scoring sits at 44 goals in total, an average of 2.9 goals per home fixture.
But it’s not just been a story about their scoring exploits this season. That has almost taken a back seat actually. The defence of Liverpool, led by Virgil van Dijk has been so impressive. They have only conceded nine goals at home in the league this season, taking a clean sheet in 60% of all their home games. They have taken two clean sheets in their last three on home soil now. The Reds have won 53% of their home games to nil this season.
Following this game against Spurs, the Reds will only have one remaining game against another of the so-called big six. That is when Chelsea pay a visit in mid-April. So far at home this season against the others, Liverpool have taken big wins over Arsenal and Manchester United, while they dug out a 0-0 draw under the challenge of Manchester City in a strangely cautious game.
Although they have their first game at their new stadium coming up to look forward to, the form of Tottenham has fallen away dramatically in their recent run of games. It has been a disappointing return of just one point in their last four games now for the Lilywhites. They were well in the mix for a title challenge, but they couldn’t withstand the pressure and keep themselves in there. That’s all fallen away now for them. They are W2 D1 L5 in their games against the other Big Six this season.
It has fallen away to the point where their top four finish is no longer looking a certainty as just four points separates them in third place and Chelsea in sixth. What could play into the hands of Liverpool even more, is that Spurs are on a three-match losing streak away from home? They have suffered straight defeats against Burnley, Chelsea and Southampton that sequence, conceding exactly two goals in each of them. Spurs have managed just one clean sheet in their last nine league games.
Liverpool should have the edge with Tottenham’s defence having crumbled to some poor defeats recently on their travels. This is a big chance for Liverpool to take another step towards a potential league title in knocking off another of the Big Six at Anfield. Given the strength of Liverpool’s defence, Liverpool to beat Tottenham without conceding is at 15/8 odds* (betting odds taken from bet365 on March 27th, 2019 at 7:03 pm)
The big North London derby has taken on some extra importance for Spurs now. Their title challenge has crumbled away in the space of a week after having suffered back to back league defeats.
Arsenal meanwhile have started to put together a hot streak of form and they will arrive at Wembley on Saturday on a three-match winning streak. The odds on Arsenal To beat Tottenham are at 5/2* (betting odds taken from bet365 on February 28th, 20198 at 7:03 pm)
* (betting odds taken from bet365 on February 28th, 20198 at 7:03 pm)
Gunner put on a fine show in midweek at the Emirates as they powered five goals past Bournemouth. That was their third win on the bounce in the top flight and they have taken a win in five of their last six played. The only blip on that sequence of form was a loss out at Manchester City.
The goals are flowing from the Gunners and they have scored at least two goals six of their last eight top-flight games. Each of their last seven league wins have seen Arsenal score at least two goals in. They have been a bit flaky on their travels though, but they collected a 2-1 win at Huddersfield in their last away game in the top flight. That snapped a run of just one point in their five previous games.
So maybe they have broken out of those away day slumps. It has been their defence which has let them down on their travels because their scoring has been just fine. They average just under two goals per away game this season and 85% of all their road games have gone over 2.5 goals. So while they have their frailties at the back, what has to come into play is their attacking power.
Their confident attacking display tore Spurs apart when the two met in the first North London derby this season. More of the same against a Tottenham side who have had their confidence rocked could see the Gunners drive home an advantage again over their rivals. The odds on Arsenal to beat Tottenham & both teams to score is at 5/1 odds* (betting odds taken from bet365 on February 28th, 20198 at 7:03 pm). The one doubt over Arsenal is that they have not won an away game against any side currently in the top ten in the league.
Their chance at the title was always slim with Liverpool and Manchester City going strongly, but Spurs had done so well to keep themselves in touch. That was until the last week of action. Last weekend Spurs paid a visit to Burnley and suffered a shock 2-1 defeat, which boss Mauricio Pochettino getting all fired up. That snapped a good four-match winning streak that they were in the league. But it seems as if it was a game which broke their momentum.
They went to Stamford Bridge in midweek and Spurs lost 2-0 against Chelsea in a really tame display. They never looked a threat at all in the game and couldn’t produce anything up front. The return of Harry Kane hasn’t quite worked out. Since he came back from injury that is back to back league defeats for them.
Their ability to perform against the better sides has been called into question as well. They have played three of the current top five at home this season and have lost each of those (Liverpool, Man City and Man Utd) plus they lost 4-2 at Arsenal earlier this season.
Neither of these really have done much against the other top sides in the division. But this is as good of a time as any for Arsenal to be catching Spurs. Tottenham looked tired and well out of touch at Stamford Bridge in midweek. Spurs will also have one eye on their Champions League game on Tuesday against Borussia Dortmund. The odds on Arsenal to beat Tottenham at 5/2 are not without appeal* (betting odds taken from bet365 on February 28th, 20198 at 7:03 pm).
A fierce London rivalry will kick up again on Wednesday night as Spurs make the trip to Stamford Bridge. This is a big game for both of the sides as Tottenham will be looking to recover after a shock defeat against Burnley last weekend.
Chelsea have to pick up the pieces as they try to keep themselves in the hunt for a top-four finish this season. With the difficulties the Blues have been having recently, the odds on Tottenham to beat Chelsea are at 9/4* (betting odds taken from Bet365 on February 26th, 2019 at 3:53 pm)
* (betting odds taken from Bet365 on February 26th, 2019 at 3:53 pm)
Spurs were on a four-match winning streak in the Premier League before their trip to Burnley on the weekend. Spurs kicked off as favourites for the fixture, but they were stunned in a 2-1 reverse. To be fair to the Lilywhites they were catching Burnley at the wrong time. The Clarets have been in fantastic form themselves lately as they have staved off the threat of relegation. But will Tottenham be able to muster up a response to that defeat?
This is going to be a test of their character and those dropped points were a missed chance to put some pressure on the top two over the weekend. Spurs are six points off leaders Liverpool as the midweek round of Premier League action kicks off again. There is little more margin for error for the Lilywhites from this point on.
That loss against Burnley was just Tottenham’s third away defeat of the season. They have won all of their other eleven road games this season, so they have once again proved to be a very strong road team. They were on a four-match winning streak on their travels before that trip to Turf Moor as well. So they have been fairly consistent and their goal scoring has been on point as well away from home.
Spurs have averaged 2.2 goals per road game this season and along the way, they have taken a clean sheet in 43% of their away fixtures. So their numbers really do stack up. Of the eleven wins away from home that they have recorded, six of them have been by a one-goal margin. The odds on Tottenham to beat Chelsea by a one-goal margin in this meeting is at 15/4 odds* (betting odds taken from Bet365 on February 26th, 2019 at 3:53 pm)
The game against Burnley on the weekend also saw the return of striker Harry Kane from injury. That is a massive boost for the Lilywhites as they thought that they would have lost him for a bit longer. Immediately he got into action and immediately Kane was back among the goals. He got Tottenham’s only goal in their loss at Turf Moor. The fact that he is back and scoring again though makes a tremendous difference to Tottenham.
Last season Tottenham snapped a long a long winless streak of form at Stamford Bridge which stretched to over twenty games. They finally managed to snap that exhausting record with a 3-1 win and that is the scoreline by which they beat Chelsea at home this season. It will be fascinating now to see if they can really start shifting the power their way in meetings at the Bridge.
Spurs did go there in this season’s EFL Cup and suffered a 2-1 loss in the second leg of their semi-final tie. But that was after beating Chelsea at home in the first leg so Spurs are W2 L1 in three against the Blues this season. When they hosted Chelsea in the league back at the end of November, Spurs were just phenomenal and barely gave the Blues a kick of the ball, in one of their best performances of the season.
The Blues have been having their problems. It remains to be seen whether keeper Kepa will play or not. He refused to be substituted in their EFL Cup Final loss against Manchester City on the weekend. While the Blues have held their own pretty well at home this season, they have lost three of their last four games, home and away combined. There have been defensive vulnerabilities from them.
Also in facing the better sides, they have to try and be conservative a bit because their defence has been vulnerable. That takes even more away from them as an attacking unit and their attack has not been a major threat recently. There has been a lot of possession and a lack of end product from the Blues. They lack the incisiveness that the slick, creative Tottenham manage to play within their games. Stamford Bridge will be under siege once again by the Lilywhites.
The odds on Tottenham to beat Chelsea do appear to be some value at 9/4* (betting odds taken from Bet365 on February 26th, 2019 at 3:53 pm). If you look at the bigger picture of Tottenham’s away from this season it has been good. They have gotten Harry Kane back in action and this is a good time to be meeting Chelsea, who have been having been showing a lot of fractures.