Champions League, Europa League & Europa Conference League Previews & Tips

This week, we will know which teams have made it through to the semi-finals of the three major club competitions in European football.

On Tuesday and Wednesday, we will find out who the four teams are that will contest the Champions League semi-finals, while on Thursday, the quarter final second leg ties in both the Europa League and the new Europa Conference League will also take place.

As you would expect, the teams involved are all hoping that they can make it through to the next stage and in truth, almost every game sees both teams in with at least some chance of progressing, while many ties are very much in the balance.

With 12 second leg ties to look through across the three competitions, let’s now take a look at the situation of each of the games, with odds provided as usual by bet365 Sport and all odds shown were correct at the time of writing but may have changed in the meantime.

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We’re going to go through the games chronologically and also in their respective competitions, which means we start with Tuesday night’s action in the Champions League.

Champions League Quarter Finals

1st Leg Scores

  • Benfica 1-3 Liverpool (Nunez 49), (Konate 17, Mane 34, Diaz 87)
  • Man City 1-0 Atletico Madrid (De Bruyne 70)
  • Villarreal 1-0 Bayern Munich (Danjuma 8)
  • Chelsea 1-3 Real Madrid (Havertz 40), (Benzema 21,24,46)

Tuesday 12th April

  • Bayern Munich (0) v (1) Villarreal

There’s no doubt that the first leg result here was the surprise result in the Champions League last week. However, Bayern were held 1-1 by Red Bull Salzburg in the last round and won the home leg 7-1, so the Germans won’t be unduly concerned. Villarreal though beat Juventus 3-0 away from home last time out too, so they will be confident here and I can see an uncomfortable night in prospect for the home side but I am still backing Bayern to win the game at 2/9.

  • Real Madrid (3) v (1) Chelsea

Karim Benzema’s second hat trick in successive Champions League games handed Real Madrid a huge victory over Chelsea at Stamford Bridge in the first leg and puts the Spanish side in pole position here. Chelsea’s form has been poor of late, despite a 6-0 win at Southampton at the weekend and it is hard to see them being able to recover from this and in truth, I think we can expect another Real Madrid win here which is a 7/5 chance.

Wednesday 13th April

  • Atletico Madrid (0) v (1) Manchester City

Atletico did not have a shot on target, or indeed a shot of any kind, against Manchester City in the first leg and their attempts to suffocate the game almost worked, bar for De Bruyne’s 70th minute goal. It will be a different story in the Wanda Metropolitano here for both sides, but even so I still think City are the class act of the two teams an dI would be surprised if they don’t go on and win this second leg tie too. City are 4/5 to land the win.

  • Liverpool (3) v (1) Benfica

Liverpool came out on top of the first leg winning 3-1 and I think that sets them up very nicely for the home leg here. Benfica are not as good a team as Inter Milan and I think that means Liverpool should win this game also. The Reds drew at Man City at the weekend to keep their title hopes alive and I think they will move into the Champions League semi finals with another win here at short priced odds of 2/7.

Europa League Quarter Finals

1st Leg Scores

  • Red Bull Leipzig 1-1 Atlanta (Zappacosta og 58), (Muriel 17)
  • West Ham 1-1 Lyon (Bowen 52), (Ndombele 66)
  • Eintracht Frankfurt 1-1 Barcelona (Knauff 48), (Torres 66)
  • Braga 1-0 Rangers (Ruiz 40)

Thursday 14th April

  • Atalanta (1) v (1) Red Bull Leipzig

I was quite surprised to see these two teams battle out a 1-1 draw in Germany as I did expect a few more goals to be scored given the strengths and weaknesses of these two quarter final opponents. The tie has probably swung slightly in favour of Atalanta now, given they play the second leg at home, but I would not rule out Red Bull Leipzig just yet. As such, I am going to back the draw here at 5/2 and I feel this game may be decided in extra time or on penalties.

  • Lyon (1) v (1) West Ham

West Ham face a tricky task here against a team unbeaten in seven games against English teams (including three against Manchester City) and who have not tasted defeat in this competition as yet this season. The Hammers will also be without left back Aaron Cresswell who was red-carded in the first leg. Lyon are a tough side to beat, especially at home and while this will be another close one, I think that the French side will do just enough to take the win. Back Lyon here at even money.

  • Barcelona (1) v (1) Eintracht Frankfurt

The first leg saw these two teams fail to establish an advantage and now the tie does swing massively in favour of Barcelona in my view. The Catalan side are much better now under Xavi and after some astute signings in the winter transfer window, plus the return to form of a number of key players, this Barcelona team is probably playing its best football of the season. Frankfurt have never lost in Spain to Spanish opponents though, so it will be close but I am backing Barcelona to win at 4/9.

  • Rangers (0) v (1) Braga

Braga produced a solid home performance to earn the win over Rangers and the Scottish side did not manage a shot on target in the game. That will be a worry for them heading into the second leg, even with the game being at Ibrox. The teams met two years ago, Rangers winning both games including a 3-2 win at Ibrox. I can see Rangers winning here, which is a 10/11 chance, but I feel we may need extra time or perhaps penalties to decide the winner.

Europa Conference League

1st Leg Scores

  • Feyenoord 3-3 Slavia Prague (Sinisterra 10, Senesi 74, Kokcu 86), (Olayinka 41, Sor 67, Traore 90)
  • Marseille 2-1 PAOK (Gerson 13, Payet 45), (El Kaddouri 48)
  • Leicester City 0-0 PSV Eindhoven
  • Bodo Glimt 2-1 AS Roma (Saltnes 56, Vetlesen 89), (Pellegrini 43)

Thursday 14th April

  • Slavia Prague (3) v (3) Feyenoord

Certainly one of the most entertaining games in all the quarterfinal first leg ties played last week. Slavia Prague battled to a draw thanks to a late injury time leveller in Rotterdam which means I feel they are favourites to win this tie. However, the bookies still favour Feyenoord which is a little strange to me given how the first leg played out and how Slavia have been strong in Europe the last few years. As such, take the 9/5 on Slavia landing the win here.

  • PAOK (1) v (2) Marseille

PAOK did well to hold Marseille to just a single goal victory in the first leg in the south of France, but the Greek side are going to find it just as tough in the second leg. My gut feeling here is that Marseille will play this game on the counter, knowing that PAOK have to score at least one goal to force the tie into extra time. That I think will leave Marseille gaps at the back to exploit. This will be close, but I think in the end the draw is a good option here at 23/10 which would put Marseille through.

  • PSV Eindhoven (0) v (0) Leicester City

I did expect there to be goals in the first leg of this tie between two of the better teams remaining in this competition and certainly there is a feeling now that PSV are the favourites to progress. I am not so sure though as while I feel this game will end in a draw at the 90 minute mark, I do feel that Leicester do have enough quality to perhaps pinch the win in extra time or on penalties if required. So, take the draw here at 13/5, but don’t be too surprised if the Foxes come through the tie.

  • AS Roma (1) v (2) Bodo Glimt

After being trashed in the group stage of this competition by the same opponents, AS Roma will be happy to take a one-goal deficit into the second leg in Rome. There I would expect Jose Mourinho’s team to exact revenge for that defeat by claiming the win they need in order to progress through to the semi finals. Bodo Glimt have been the surprise package of this tournament this year, but I think this is where their luck will run out. Take Roma to win at 1/3 with bet365.

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