Advertisement

Barstool’s Champions League Preview – Group Stage Matchday 3(a)

Sam’s Soccer Safe Space For Stoolies

Hello haters,

Soccer is a fickle mistress. One week ago today it was simultaneously ripping our hearts out and stomping on our dicks. Now it is about to provide us with two days of the finest jogo bonito-ing on god’s green earth to help shepherd us through the midweek doldrums* thanks to

Ah yes, the excitement is welling up in my plums. Now let’s start getting our mind right for the matchups in story…

*Save for the half-hour of fun and enjoyment in store on espn2 at midnight CT tonight when the highly acclaimed first episode of Barstool Van Talk drops.

***********************

CHAMPIONS LEAGUE

Updated standings for the eight groups:

2-table1
3-table2

As for games on deck for today and tomorrow, here’s what we got on tap today and tomorrow:

4-schedule1
5-schedule2

***

City [-160]
Napoli [+400]
Draw [+275]

Listen, I am looking forward to Tottenham visiting Real Madrid as much as the next guy, but I can’t help thinking the potential splendor of this City/Napoli game might be flying a little under the radar for a lot of people. City’s offense is scary enough that they have been legitimately threatening to drop double figures on other top-flight teams (and Crystal Palace) recently, and this has been without the services of Sergio Aguero for the last little bit. Napoli, on the other hand, has more quietly put together one of the better seasons in Europe so far, albeit slightly marred by a somewhat inexplicable loss at Shakhtar in the Champions League last month.

This will inevitably be billed as a battle of the three-headed attacking monsters – City’s Sane/Jesus/Sterling vs Napoli’s Callejon/Mertens/Insigne – but both team’s defensive records are equally as impressive, with a grand total of four goals conceded by the EPL side and five by the Italians (IN EIGHT GAMES A PIECE). I have a sneaking suspicion though that both teams are a little weaker at the back than the statistics imply, meaning plenty of goals (and entertainment) should be in store.

Napoli was one of my darkhorses in the UCL preview, and today’s result is unlikely to change my opinion on that, as I’m going against my better judgment and assuming that Nicolas Otamendi only gives up one bad goal rather than three… City to win 3-2.

[Sidenote: the lines for this game are dumb. Bookies out here acting like City is welcoming Burnley to the Etihad. Um, no, it’s Napoli and they better put some RESPECK on those small but mighty Napoleons [sic]… so if you are feeling frisky and looking for a good value long-shot there would be FAR worse picks today than Napoli.]

City rn

**

Real Madrid [-250]
Tottenham [+560]
Draw [+375]

Another game where bookies should be showing a little more respect for the underdogs. This game isn’t be playing Wembley, you dummies! If it was, sure, no chance Spurs win. But anywhere else and this oughta be a close contest. Tottenham’s defense is legit and Real’s offense has not exactly been clicking on all cylinders. Damn shame that Spurs will be without Dele Alli, who is serving the last game of a red card suspension, as his presence could have helped at least help even out of the battle for control of the midfield. Could this be another famous UCL result a la Inter-in-2010? Yep. Will it be? Ermmmmmm, not so sure. Can’t help thinking Ronny and Kane goals cancel one another out… but Isco eventually breaks the deadlock. Real to win 2-1.

Spurs snatching that dub today like

**

APOEL [+1000]
Dortmund [-425]
Draw [+550]

Poor li’l Cypriots. Won’t know what hit them after BVBabyjesus & Co. roll through today. Dortmund to win 4-1.

You deserved better, bae

You deserved better, bae

**

Maribor [+1200]
Liverpool [-650]
Draw [+650]

Two draws on the trot for the Reds in Champions League play and three overall if you include the scoreless game against United on Saturday. Given the continued absence of Sadio Mane, could Maribor possibly pull out a win today? No, absolutely not. But never say never on parking the bus and hoping Liverpool get frustrated and settle for long hopeful balls and 35-yard shots. People will inevitably say this is just my pro-Liverpool bias talking… but I think a moment of magic from Coutinho will be the difference. Liverpool to win 1-0.

Fun fact: incident behind movie “Hostel” took place in Maribor**

Fun fact: incident behind movie “Hostel” took place in Maribor**

**

Extra bonus upset special: Spartak Moscow (+320) over Sevilla (-125). Nobody likes traveling to Mother Russia this time of year, especially from the warm environs of southern Spain.

*****************************************

Reminder: got another biggggggggg slate tomorrow including United and Chelsea and Arsenal.

**I may have totally made that up


Holler,
Samuel Army