Thursday’s 2015/16 UEFA Champions League Matchday 3 fixtures have drawn a number of key rivals against one another; undoubtedly highlighted by a blockbuster between Real Madrid and Paris St. Germain.
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Wolfsburg vs PSV Eindhoven
In what should be a great encounter from a spectator’s perspective, German outfit Wolfsburg host the ever-dangerous PSV Eindhoven on Matchday 3. PSV currently sit atop standings in Group B owing to their superior goal difference, and will take a big step towards qualification to the knockout phase of the tournament with success on Thursday. Wolfsburg at home are a tough task for any team, but a draw offers the best value in this match.
Paris St Germain vs Real Madrid
An absolute blockbuster will take place in Paris on Thursday morning when Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s PSG lock horns with Cristiano Ronaldo’s Real Madrid. Understandably, the sides remain locked atop standing in Group A with two wins and strong goal differences, and this match is sure to play a big part in who tops the pool and gets the better run into the quarters. PSG at home are always a far-better prospect for success but Real Madrid are simply too classy and offer exceptional value for money to win at current $3 odds.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic scores and PSG wins: $4
Cristiano Ronaldo scores and Real Madrid wins: $5
Galatasaray vs Benfica
In what has every likelihood of figuring as one of the more well-contested fixtures of Matchday 3, consistent Turkish champions Galatasaray host Portuguese powers Benfica on Thursday morning. Benfica have stormed out to the lead in Group C after delivering both Astana and giants Real Madrid defeat in their first two games, but are sure to be tested in the arid conditions in Turkey. Galatasaray probably have to win this match to stay in touch but could very well be outclassed.
Manchester City vs Sevilla
Manchester City remain atop standing in the English Premier League but have been unable to translate the form into European success; sitting third overall in Group D. Sevilla appear City’s biggest rivals in progressing alongside Juventus to the knockout phase of the tournament, but will have to take control of the match from the outset on Thursday if they are any chance of success at Eastlands.
Kevin DeBruyne scores and City wins: $4
Fernando Llorente scores and Sevilla wins: $13
Atletico Madrid vs Astana
Thursday morning will also see the highly-rated Atletico Madrid take on the 2015/16 Champions League’s lowest rated side in Kazakhstan’s Astana. Astana have been far from disgraced in their first appearance in Europe’s headline competition; losing to Benfica first-up but holding Galatasaray to a well-fought draw. Astana are sure to play with plenty of heart but realistically, Atletico will be too good.
CSKA Moscow vs Manchester United
One of the more interesting fixtures of Matchday 3 of the Champions League will peg CSKA Moscow and Manchester United against one another in Russia. Neither team is yet to hit peak condition through two matches but whoever wins this game will take a big step towards the right end of the ladder. Manchester United are interestingly favourites to win however CSKA can never be written off at home and a draw offers excellent value for money.
Seydou Doumbia scores and CSKA wins: $7
Wayne Rooney scores and United wins: $5
Malmo FF vs Shakhtar Donetsk
Swedish champions Malmo and ever-present Ukraine club Shakhtar Donetsk are yet to post a win this campaign and will both be desperate to get on the board in this tie. Having faced an uphill battle in being drawn against Real Madrid and PSG in Group A, both teams will probably exit the tournament at the pool stage but the result of this fixture will likely determine who move on to the Europa League.
Juventus vs Borussia Monchengladbach
Group D leaders Juventus return to Italy to play Group D cellar-dwellers Borussia Monchengladbach on Matchday 3. As expected, Juventus have taken a stranglehold on the Group and will be very tough to knock off top spot, while Monchengladbach are already almost out of contention. Juventus should win and all but confirm their spot in the quarterfinals.