2019 UEFA Champions League Round of 16 continues on Wednesday when Bundesliga squad Schalke takes on top Premier League team Manchester City and Atletico battles Juventus. Check out our odds on the matchups along with analysis and a Champions League betting pick to boost your bankroll.
[Wednesday, Feb. 20]
Schalke +950 vs Manchester City -365 (3:00pm ET)
The odds imply Man City dominated Schalke on Wednesday. Right now, it’s difficult to come up with a reason not to follow the oddsmakers. Schalke has been down right pathetic on the pitch in recent games.
Their form’s awful, winning only a single match, 4-1 over Fortuna Dusseldorf, in their last 5. They drew against both SC Freiburg and Hertha Berlin. Bayern Munich, who’s got a Champions League Tuesday match against Liverpool, dominated Schalke 3-1. Not only that, but the top Bundesliga squad, Dortmund, fell 0-3 to Tottenham last week and the Hotspur played without Harry Kane. How quality of a league is the Bundelisga?
There’s no doubting the Premier League’s pedigree. Manchester City is the best team in EPL and this season, the EPL is ridiculously deep. Man City is so good that they dominated Chelsea 6-0 a few matches ago.
They’re tied with Liverpool in EPL with 65 points. That’s 5 points ahead of Tottenham and 14 points ahead of Man United. They’ll easily beat Schalke on Feb. 20. You have to pay a steep price, but it’s easy money.
Champions League Betting Free Pick: Manchester City -365
Atletico Madrid +185 vs Juventus +180 (3:00pm ET)
Atletico battled Dortmund to a 13 points Group A draw, but lost the group due to goal differential while Juventus won Group H over Manchester United. Juventus must travel to Wanda Metropolitano Stadium for this Round of 16 battle.
The Italian Serie A’s team strategy might be to play to a draw. Juventus is perfectly capable of pulling that off. They’ve beaten their last couple of league opponents, Sassuolo and Frosinone, a combined 6-0. Even though Christiano Ronaldo is one of the greatest strikers in history, Juventus hasn’t changed their identity. They’re still the defense first team that finished runner-up to Barcelona in the 2015 Champions League Final, and runner-up to Real Madrid in the 2017 final.
That might be the issue. While Juventus will play it safe, Atletico should push the pace with their excellent attack. Atletico Madrid has a 7-2-1 record in their last 10 at Wanda Metropolitano. That’s only a single loss and 2 draws in their last 10 at home.
They’ll push forward while Juventus drops back. Atletico’s backs are excellent at preventing the counter attack while Ronaldo might have to help out on Atletico corner kicks and free kicks. That puts Juventus’ attack behind on the counter.
Overall, this shapes up as a hard fought Atletico Madrid win. Juventus will try to keep the goal differential to 0 or 1 while Atletico will be aggressive like they always are when both Costa and Griezmann play. Atletico Madrid wins.
Champions League Betting Free Pick: Atletico Madrid +185