The UEFA Champions League round of 16 continues with the second leg of four matchups scheduled for Tuesday and Wednesday, followed by the quarter-final draw.
With all that in mind, let’s move on to this week’s sports. As always, remember that these bets are only for the result at the end of regulation.
Courtesy of Caesars Sportsbook
FC Porto (+170), Inter Milan (+160), Draw (+230)
(Inter lead aggregate 1-0)
Inter Milan took the first match 1–0 and are slight favorites over Porto. Who do you see winning this match and who do you see progressing to the quarters?
Paul Carr: In the first leg, Porto had the better chances over Inter (1.7 expected goals to Inter’s 0.7) until Otavio’s 78th-minute red card. His absence from this game makes me a little hesitant to pick Porto, but Inter’s season-long inconsistency and Porto’s strength at home (14 wins and three losses this season) are enough to convince me. Porto beat both Atlético Madrid and Bayer Leverkusen at home in the group stage, and I think they can do it again. i will win porto in 90 minutes (+170)And I don’t hate Porto for moving (+275) one of two.
Manchester City (-270), Leipzig (+700), Draw (+380)
The first leg was 1-1, but Leipzig vs Man City is the heavy favorite here. Do you see them endorsing this or is there a bigger glitch in store?
Carr: RB Leipzig stifled Man City’s attack relatively well in the first leg, conceding 12 shots and 1.2 expected goals, both of which were City’s fewest per game this season. Leipzig has also only had two losses in 24 games since October, and both losses came by a single goal, so playing Leipzig +1.5 (-125) is tempting. However, top scorer Christopher Nkuku (thigh) and defensive midfielder Xaver Schlager (ankle) are both ruled out of this second leg, making it difficult for Leipzig to keep either City or Pep Guardiola’s side at bay. City home games meant goals all season, with at least three goals in 16 of the 20 matches, and four or more in a dozen of them. I will take 3 goals even by paying money.
Napoli (-210), Frankfurt (+575), Draw (+325)
Frankfurt are chasing two goals here, where Napoli are 2-1 over-favourites in the leg 2. who do you like here?
Carr: Napoli have never made it to the quarter-finals of the European Cup, but now they are priced at -15000 to do so. Napoli dominated the first leg with 70 percent possession against Eintracht Frankfurt 18 to five, with 2.9 expected goals to Frankfurt’s 0.5. I see no reason for this second leg to be any different, especially with Frankfurt’s top scorer Randal Kolo Muani suspended following his red card in the first leg. Napoli will have their full squad available, having won 14 of 17 home games this season, with an expected goal advantage in all 17 games. Of course I’d get a better price, but even a juicy -210 number isn’t enough to stop me from playing Napoli to win this match and forcefully advance into the quarters.
Real Madrid (+130), Liverpool (+180), Draw (+270)
(Real Madrid ahead 5-2)
The defending cup holders won the first leg of the 2022 finals rematch 5-2. How do you see leg 2 playing out with such a huge lead on aggregate?
Carr: In the Champions League era, no team has advanced after losing the first leg by three goals at home. Liverpool would not be the first club to do so, as Real Madrid would advance even with the loss of two goals. Because of which anything seems possible in this match just like the first phase. I’m staying away from a result, but Real Madrid should again have plenty of chances as Liverpool are pushing for goals. Real Madrid thrive on the counter, and they have scored at least twice in 12 of their 17 home games this season, with 10 of those matches having at least a 2.0 expected goals. Combine this with a Liverpool that still has offensive firepower, and i will play 3 goals at -110,
Former ESPN senior researcher Paul Carr is director of content for TruMedia.