Manchester City will take on Real Madrid in the first leg of a Champions League semifinal this week.
City finished as the runner-up last season and is currently considered the best team in the world, while Madrid has ridden Karim Benzema’s hot hand to the “final four” stage. Let’s take a look at Man City vs Real Madrid Betting Analysis.
Manchester City beat Watford 5-1 at the weekend, building on a 3-0 win over Brighton & Hove Albion three days earlier in the league. Their last matchup with a high-profile team came in the FA Cup, where they were defeated 3-2 by Liverpool.
Real Madrid has won four of its last five matches, with the exception being a 3-2 loss to Chelsea that was still not enough to knock them out of the tournament. Their last match was a 3-1 win over Osasuna last Wednesday in which three different players managed to find the back of the net.
The match will kick off in the Etihad Stadium in Manchester, England Tuesday at 3:00 p.m. ET.
Man City vs Real Madrid Betting Analysis
Manchester City Betting Analysis
Man City has topped the Champions League betting odds practically since the final whistle blew in last year’s final and is now tied with Liverpool for the best odds in this year’s competition. They snuck past Atletico Madrid in the last round and head into the semifinal in decent form, albeit not their absolute best.
City’s manager, Pep Guardiola, chooses to rotate his squad fairly heavily week-to-week and could roll out a number of lineups, depending on what he feels is optimal for the matchup. Regardless of who plays, however, City will look to overrun the midfield and dominate the ball possession, pressing high up the pitch and working hard to win the ball back whenever they lose it.
Real Madrid Betting Analysis
Real Madrid has almost been eliminated from the competition twice already; first by Paris Saint-Germain, who went out via a second-half, second-leg Karim Benzema hat-trick, and then Chelsea, who thoroughly outplayed the Spaniards on their home ground by could not overcome another Benzema hat-trick or outrageous Luka Modric assist in the dying moments.
This Madrid team is experienced but also has much more speed than they have the past couple of years, which should allow them to match up better against the English teams. Their defense is vulnerable to crosses, but because City does not play with a true number-nine, this should not be a major issue.
John Stones and Kyle Walker are both likely to miss the fixture against Madrid with injuries; defender Nathan Ake returned from an injury of his own over the weekend but was reportedly playing with a major issue, which could compromise his status or performance in the midweek.
David Alaba and Casemiro’s statuses are in doubt for the matchup, which would severely compromise their defensive line. Speedy left-back Ferland Mendy also has a problem of his own and might miss the game, though he could also return if he continues to make progress.
Man City vs Real Madrid Betting Preview
Sports betting guides will say that this is a matchup between two titans in the sport, but the game should prove to be fairly lopsided in all reality. City has a much better squad and plays a more intricate and effective style of soccer.
Real Madrid also relies heavily upon moments of individual brilliance, and while this is a great luxury to have, it is typically a problem if this is the only way a team knows how to operate. Benzema will likely snatch a goal from nothing somewhere, but unless he can turn in another hat-trick, it is tough to see the visitors walking away with a positive result.
Man City vs Real Madrid Betting Prediction
Side with the wisdom of Champions League odds and take Man City to win this game. They will be desperate to finally win their first Champions League picks title and cement themselves as the consensus best team in the world, and that starts with beating Madrid.
As many times as Real Madrid has headline betting guides in past decades, this year is not their time.
How to Bet on Man City vs Real Madrid
Man City is a -220 favorite to win the match, while Madrid is a +550; there are +370 odds on a draw.