From Atalanta and Leverkusen’s winless run, Inter and Dortmund’s fight for second place in Group F and Spurs’ away form, Matchweek 4 of the Champions League is well poised. Here are some of the things to look out for this week. Bet on the Champions League here.
More disappointment for Dortmund?
Borussia Dortmund host Italian giants Inter Milan in a huge Group F encounter which could go a long way in determining who progresses to the last 16. The Nerazzurri emerged victorious the last time these two met. Goals from Lautaro Martinez and Antonio Candreva were enough to secure a comfortable 2-0 victory over Lucien Favre’s team. Dortmund will need to be up for it from the first minute but should be wary of the threat Antonio Conte’s side pose. With Barcelona looking likely to take top spot, the second place will be fought by these two who are level on points with four after three games. Dortmund have a poor record in this competition in the last few games. They have won just two matches in their last eight matches. Can they take maximum points in front of their crowd?
Atalanta and Leverkusen to edge closer to elimination
Atalanta and Bayer Leverkusen are the only teams in this season’s competition without a win. Despite Atalanta’s impressive Serie A form, the Italians have massively underwhelmed in their first season in the Champions League. They’ve lost all their three games conceding 11 goals and scoring just two. Considering they have the best attack in Serie A, this is disappointing. They welcome Manchester City, a side that hammered them 5-1 last time out. Barring any special performance from the hosts, City should comfortably win to push the Italians close to elimination. Leverkusen have also been poor this season. They’ve lost all their three games scoring just once. They host a battle-hardened Atletico Madrid side and anything other than a win will bring the 2002 finalists closer to elimination.
Real Madrid poor home form
Real Madrid are enduring an up and down season both domestically and in the Champions League. They are yet to win at home in Europe this season. They’ve lost two of their last three home games in the competition. They drew 2-2 with Club Brugge in their last home game and host Galatasaray hoping to register a second straight win. With PSG five points ahead of Los Blancos, they can only cement second place. A win will also briefly take the pressure off manager Zinedine Zidane who has come under fire due to poor performances from his team in recent weeks. Can Galatasaray cause another upset at the Santiago Bernabéu?
Chelsea to go top of Group H?
The Champions League began with a painful 1-0 home loss for Chelsea in their opening game. Since then, they’ve registered two hard-fought away wins over Lille and last season’s semi-finalists Ajax. They’re both tied at the top of Group H with six points. A Chelsea win will see them go top of the group. However, they should remember that Ajax won away at Real Madrid, Tottenham Hotspur and Juventus last season and therefore shouldn’t be taken lightly at all. In fact, the Dutch champions have not tasted an away defeat in this competition since losing to Rostov in 2016. Still, Frank Lampard’s side have lost just one of their last 18 UEFA competition fixtures. That being the case, this should be an engrossing encounter.
Spurs’ away form
Last season’s finalists have been poor this season. They take on the powerhouses of Serbian football Red Star Belgrade in an important Champions League Group B encounter this week as they seek to solidify second place. Spurs’ only victory in their last six matches in all competitions was in the reverse fixture against Red Star Belgrade last month. Tottenham’s last away win was also in this competition, though we have to go all the way back to their semi-final triumph over Ajax in May last season. Spurs have also just won just five games form 22 competitive matches in 2019. Can they register a rare away victory?