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Champions League Preview and Predictions - Last 16, 2nd Leg, Tuesday

Champions League Preview and Predictions - Last 16, 2nd Leg, Tuesday

The Champions League last 16 gets back down to business on Tuesday night when Man United welcome Atletico Madrid and Benfica head to Ajax in 2nd leg action. All to play for at Old Trafford between United and Atletico with the tie in the balance 1-1, while Ajax and Benfica clash with the tie locked at 2-2. Check out our preview and predictions for Tuesday's action and if playing online casino is your entertainment of choice, then head over to Genting Casino and check out our selection of over 3000 online slots and our Premium Live Casino tables available to play on any device!


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Manchester United v Atletico Madrid

Manchester United overcame Tottenham at the weekend, with Cristiano Ronaldo the key to success as he bagged his first hat-trick for the Red Devils since coming back for his second stint at the club. The trio of goals couldn’t have come at a better time for Man Utd’s main man, who has proved in the past how deadly he is playing against Atleti, scoring 25 goals and grabbing nine assists against his ex-Madrid rivals in just 36 games.

Atleti have dropped eight points across their last ten league games (W7-D1-L2), compared to United’s 11 (W5-D4-L1), and apart from a 1-0 loss against bottom-of-the-table Levante, all the results were to be expected (4-2 L v Barcelona, 2-2 D v Villarreal). Under Diego Simeone, Atletico were always known for their compact defensive shape and their ability to keep their opponents from scoring. This is not the case anymore with Atletico on average conceding around twice as many goals, compared to the year before (1.29 GA this season, 0.66 GA last season).

Atleti have shown a lot of character in the past when playing in England, with a record of W2-D3-L2, and were unbeaten in the five games they played in the 2010’s. The two most recent fixtures they have been involved with haven’t gone their way as such, as both of were 2-0 losses to Chelsea and Liverpool. There was only one game where Atletico were drawing going into the second leg, which was against Chelsea, and they ended up winning that one 3-1 at Stamford Bridge.

Cristiano Ronaldo is built for nights like these and has proved it on many occasions before. He has been hailed as the king of the Champions League and after his hat-trick against Spurs at the weekend, he became the number one goalscorer in professional football history with 807 to his name. We think Ronaldo and Manchester Utd will get the better of Atelti in this game, with the visitors not displaying that defensive assurance that so often saved them in the Champions League.

PREDICTION:

RONALDO TO SCORE ANYTIME

Champions League Preview and Predictions - Last 16, 2nd Leg, Wednesday

Champions League Preview and Predictions - Last 16, 2nd Leg, Wednesday



Ajax v Benfica

There were three teams that managed to win all six of their group stage games; Liverpool, Bayern and Ajax. All three of these teams have seen their streak come to an end with Bayern and Ajax drawing their first leg game and Liverpool losing 1-0 to Inter in the second leg of their tie. Ajax have shown real quality so far in the Champions League (CL) scoring an average of 3.14 goals per game whilst conceding 1.0, and are yet to score less than two goals in a CL game.

The 2-2 draw was an end-to-end fixture filled with a plethora of chances for each team, the game could have easily finished 3-3 or 4-4 if the teams weren’t as wasteful as they were with their chances, which is not the Ajax that we have come to know over the past year. The team from Amsterdam have a goal difference of 66 (77 GF, 11 GA) in the Eredivisie, PSV who are in second place have a GD of 32, which really shows the difference in quality in the Dutch league.

Ajax played one of Benfica’s biggest rivals in Sporting Lisbon during the group stage of this competition. Over the two games, the score was 9-3, including a 5-1 win in Lisbon. When we consider that Benfica are on a similar level to Lisbon, (Lisbon 3rd with 58 pts, Benfica 2nd with 61 pts and a game in hand) the Dutch team should have enough quality to progress in the tournament. 

There have been over 3.5 Goals in 71% of Ajax’s CL games and in 43% of Benfica’s games. Both teams will be looking to get on the front foot early on because of the removal of away goals from this year's CL. 

PREDICTION:

AJAX TO WIN AND OVER 3.5 GOALS

 

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