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Barstool’s Champions League Preview – Group Stage Matchday 5(b)

Sam’s Soccer Safe Space For Stoolies

Hello haters,

But enough about old shit. Time for…

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CHAMPIONS LEAGUE

Results from yesterday:

2-results

Updated standings for the eight groups (as of this morning):

3-groups1
4-groups2

– Clubs that have OFFICIALLY ADVANCED to the knockouts: Bayern, PSG, City, Besiktas, Tottenham, Real Madrid (update: and Chelsea based on this morning’s game)

– DEAD clubs: Benfica, Anderlecht, Karabakh, Olympiacos, Maribor, Feyenoord, APOEL, Celtic, Monaco, Dortmund

– DEATH’S DOOR: Napoli, Atletico

And finally the games on deck today:

5-schedule

[Reminder: if you are planning to run down to the comment section to tell me all about how there were games that started earlier, just don’t. The moment we start changing our schedules and lives around to fit Russia’s ridiculous kickoff times is the moment we lose our dignity as a civilization. Be better.]

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Juventus [+205]
Barcelona [+140]
Draw [+220]

It’s been an open secret that Juventus aren’t anywhere near as good as last season’s (underrated) team, even managing to lose a home game to Lazio last month – something that Old Lady squads of old absolutely never did. What has gone a little more unnoticed is Barcelona’s relatively unimpressive form. It’s not that they aren’t winning almost every game, because they are, but the club’s traditionally well-oiled machine has just looked a bit… off. Juventus will be without CB Giorgio Chiellini, which is a problem but one wild card to keep in mind: Barcelona could have one eye on their big game with Valennnnnnthia coming up this weekend. I’ve gone back and forth on this one, but finally settled on Paolo Dybala being extra motivated and pulling out a mini-Messi like performance. I’ll say 1-1 draw.

Good at soccer. Bad at tattoos.

Good at soccer. Bad at tattoos.

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Atletico [+140]
Roma [+310]
Draw [+235]

Atletico has been prettaaaaaay, prettaaaaaay, prettaaaaaaaaay, pretty bad this Champions League campaign, and they are deservedly clinging to life needing a LOT of help in order to catch either Roma or Chelsea to advance out of the group. It goes without saying then that today’s game is an absolute must-win (literally, for once). Atleti has caught a lot of criticism so far but the fact is they are the same old team as they always have been, giving up at most one goal in (almost) every single game this season. The big difference is that whereas they have been scoring a goal or sometimes two every game year after year – meaning jussssssssssst enough to get by – the offensive well has run dry this season. Bookies seem to think that Atleti’s desperation will be the difference in this one, which is something I can often get on board with, but given their scoring woes and Roma’s extremely stingy defense, it is hard not to love the odds on offer with the Italians. I’m going Roma to win 1-0. (but wouldn’t call you a dotard if you went with a scoreless or at most 1-1 draw).

False, potentially

False, potentially

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Basel [+340]
United [-120]
Draw [+245]

Youuuuuuuge game for Basel, who will have seen CSKA win this morning and thus need a result to keep pace. The same cannot be said of United, which is finally getting healthy and has already qualified for the knockouts, meaning that Dear Leader Jozay is likely going to rest some guys. If he were to go with a first-choice XI – meaning with Pogba and Zlatan – that would be one thing. I doubt that will be the case, which should give the Swissies a fighters chance at home. Won’t be easy but I’ll give the little buggers a little benefit of the doubt… 1-1 draw.

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Bonus winners (to increase the chances I get actually one right): Bayern over Anderlecht because obviously… PSG over Celtic for similar reasons… and finally Rule #1 of Champions League betting: when in doubt go with the Portuguese, thus Sporting over Olympiakos.

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Reminder: got another biggggggggg slate tomorrow… kidding, it’s just Europa.

It just looks right

Just looks right

See ya again on Friyay!


Holler,
Samuel Army