WHO WILL PREVAIL?
RB Leipzig need only a single point to lock up top spot in Group G at UEFA Champions League qualifying, but that might prove to be a difficult task as they visit Lyon on Tuesday.
Leipzig own a three-point advantage of Lyon, who come in tied with Zenit St. Petersburg for second place; both teams have identical records, goals-for and goal margin stats through five group stage games.
Not only do Lyon (+145) have much more riding on this result – they'll need to fare better than Zenit in order to advance – but they're also the only team to have beaten Leipzig in group play, upending them 2-0 back on Oct. 2.
BLUES FEELING GOOD
Chelsea have left the security of a UEFA Champions League elimination berth to the final game of the double-round-robin group stage, but the Blues are brimming with confidence entering Tuesday's encounter with visiting Lille. Chelsea (-550) are level on points with Valencia heading into this one, but are facing a far inferior opponent in their final group stage match.
Lille (+1500) have earned just one victory through their first five tournament games and are the only team in the group with a negative goal margin (minus-4). Chelsea pulled out a 2-1 victory in France in their previous meeting in early October.
STILL ANYONE'S SPOT
Manchester City are the kings of Group C, but the team that will join them in the knockout round is still very much in doubt. Shakhtar Donetsk have the inside track on the final qualifying berth, leading Dinamo Zagreb by one point and Atalanta by two.
However, Shakhtar are +155 co-favorites for Wednesday's home encounter with Atalanta (+155) despite beating the Italian side 2-1 on the road in their previous meeting.
Dinamo (+280) have a much tougher go of it, though there's a chance group-leading Man City (-125) opt to give some of their star players more rest than usual with top spot already secured.
There's nothing tangible at stake in Wednesday's Group B encounter between powerhouse Bayern Munich and visiting Tottenham – but both sides would love to come away with three points. Bayern (-275) have rolled through the round-robin with a spotless record, highlighted by a 7-2 humiliation of Spurs back on Oct. 1.
Tottenham (+600) have rebounded nicely since then, going 5-1-1 SU in their previous seven matches overall, and will no doubt be looking to atone for what remains their worst loss of the season. The teams played to a much more competitive 2-2 draw in their only other meeting last July 31.
• Two of the highest-scoring teams in the UEFA Champions League qualifying tournament square off Tuesday as FC Salzburg host Liverpool. Led by teen phenom Erling Haaland, Salzburg have scored a tournament-best 16 goals through five games, while Liverpool (11) have been no slouches themselves. We're targeting the O3.5 in this one at +100.
• Napoli can swoop in to steal top spot in Group E if Liverpool falter on Tuesday – and they'll be looking to put a stamp on their round-robin performance as they tangle with lowly Genk. The visitors have just one point through five games while scoring a paltry five goals – and with Napoli having allowed just four themselves, we favor the home team clean sheet (-120).
• Ajax have hit their offensive stride at the UEFA Champions League, and will be looking to repeat their previous showing vs. Valencia as they play host in Tuesday's rematch. Ajax have scored 2+ goals in five of their previous six tournament matches, including a 3-0 rout of Valencia. They're an interesting O2.5 play at +150 in the rematch.
• Borussia Dortmund need a win and some help to advance to the next round – but they might find the sledding difficult as they tangle with Slavia Prague. Neither team has done much offensively in the tournament; Dortmund has scored just six goals in five games, while Slavia Prague have three. The U2.5 looks like a potential steal here at +162.
• Oddsmakers have Atalanta and Shakhtar Donetsk as even bets in their Wednesday encounter – and there could be plenty of action on the tie. Shakhtar have drawn each of their previous three Champions League matches, and only a stunning 94th-minute goal from Manor Solomon kept these teams from each earning point in their last meeting. We like the draw here at +275.
• Things could get messy in Madrid on Wednesday as Atletico look to secure their spot in the next round of the Champions League against Lokomotiv Moscow. Not only have Atletico won each of the previous three meetings between the teams – including two away wins – they've outscored their foes 10-1 in that span. Atletico on the -2 handicap is intriguing at +150.
• Can Club Brugge solve Real Madrid? That's the question bettors are asking as these teams wrap up Group A play Wednesday in Belgium. Brugge have done well to earn three points through five matches when you consider that they've managed to score just three goals all tournament. But Real Madrid are only +120 to prevail, and +275 to record the clean sheet.
• Brendan Rodgers won't be leaving Leicester City. Rodgers has signed a new contract with LCFC that will keep him with the club until 2025; his previous deal ran until 2022. Rodgers, who was linked to the Arsenal coaching vacancy, has Leicester City sitting second in the English Premier League table; they're -700 favorites to secure a top-4 spot at season's end.
• Borussia Dortmund have lost one of their key players in a strange injury development. Midfielder Axel Witsel has undergone surgery after suffering a facial injury following a fall at his home. His loss is a critical one for a Dortmund side that enters the new matchweek ranked third in the Bundesliga standings, and is +900 to win the German League title.
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