Well with match day five looming Tuesday and Wednesday, the elite clubs of Europe are vying to get into the knock out stages of club football’s most prestigious competition the UEFA Champions League (UCL). For those of you that don’t know what the UCL is I’ll provide a brief explanation. The competition is made up of by thirty-two teams split into eight groups and the top two teams from each group move onto the knockout stages.
Now that the brief explanation is out of the we can get onto the top games I’m looking forward to this week and I’ll give you my favorites to win the whole competition as of right now.
The first game is the top two teams in group A going at it with Arsenal hosting Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) on Wednesday. This game will essentially decide the winner of this group. Both teams are level on points right now with ten each. Arsenal are technically first in the group right now on goal differential, which makes a tie or win a good result for them. Based off recent form, I believe that Arsenal are going to beat the Parisians. With the way Walcott and Ozil have been playing I just don’t see the Gunners dropping this one. I’ve got Arsenal 3 – PSG 1
The next game to watch for is taking place Tuesday as Monaco host Tottenham. This is a do or die game for Spurs. Mauricio Pochettino and his men have to win this match, a tie would be almost useless for them to try and make up their current gap in points for the group. It will not be easy for Spurs tomorrow with striker Harry Kane still not 100% fit, and wonder boy Dele Ali nursing a knee injury. Spurs are going to need an inspired performance to keep Champions League aspirations alive this year. In the end though, I don’t see Spurs getting over the group leaders so I’ve got Monaco 1 – Spurs 1
The last game of interest for this week may be its best one, as Sevilla play host to Juventus. Sevilla have yet to give up a goal in the group stage, so Juve have some work cut out for them, up front especially, since they haven’t seemed to be able to replace the goals lost from Alvaro Morata being sold back to Madrid. Juve have two wins in two games on the road so far in this Champions League campaign and I see them pulling it off tomorrow I’ve got Juventus 2 – Sevilla 0
Now keep in mind it’s still very early in this competition but I’m going to give you my current three favorites to lift the trophy in Cardiff this May. My top favorite to claim European glory this spring is none other than FC Barcelona. They’re the dominant force of world football for the last decade and I really see that dominant streak continuing. With what many regard as the greatest attacking trio ever with Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez, and Neymar (MSN) there just aren’t many teams out there that could stop them. If any!
The team with second best chance to take this competition also hails from Spain but its not the other Spanish giant Real Madrid, it is the team from the other side of town Atletico Madrid. Diego Simeone’s squad have proven consistently that they can shut down the Catalan giants Barcelona. With an emerging superstar like Antoine Griezmann paired with a team with this defensive prowess, I really think this could be the year where Atletico get over the hump and lift a Champions League title.
The team with the third best chance in my mind comes from Germany. Now you’re probably thinking Bayern Munich and why wouldn’t you? They’ve been a model of excellence for pretty much their entire existence, especially since the turn of the decade, but this year keep an eye out for Borussia Dortmund. They’re the current leaders of Group F and Die Schwarzgelben look hungry this year. They get goals from almost anywhere. Now that’s not to say the don’t have a superstar striker because they do with Pierre Emerick Aubameyeng. But their mid-field is monstrous, not only are they pacey and skilled, they all are ferocious when pressing on defense. Dortmund may be riding that midfield and its depth to Cardiff this May.