Premier League holders Chelsea may not have had the best of starts to the new season, but they remain the odds-on favourites to qualify from the top of Group G, with FC Porto and Dynamo Kiev looking to spoil their plans. And while newcomers Maccabi Tel Aviv will see this campaign as a learning experience, the Primeira Liga runners up and Ukranian champions should be involved in a very interesting battle for the second qualifying berth, that is unless they manage to surprise the Blues and win the first place.
Market: Group Betting
Tip: Chelsea to Win Group G
Odds: 2/7 @ bet365
Jose Mourinho and his players are under pressure after the disappointing start to the new Premier League campaign, but with the quality and experience at his disposal, the Portuguese manager can be trusted to turn things around. Chelsea only need several good results in a row to return to the right track and the Blues will certainly attempt to use the Champions League campaign as a way to rediscover their form. And while both Porto and Dynamo Kiev can cause the English side some problems along the way, the first place in Group G is clearly theirs to lose.
Market: Group Qualification
Tip: Porto to Qualify from Group G
Odds: 1/4 @ bet365
FC Porto have been making steady progress over the years, mostly thanks to club’s shrewd transfer strategy and, for the second year running, the Portuguese giants were able to recruit some world-class talent at bargain prices. The likes of Casillas, Pereira, Imbula, Osvaldo and Layun should further improve the quality of the squad and with the team looking very good at the start of the season, we are backing them to pip Dynamo Kiev to the second place in the group despite the fact that the Ukrainians will not give up without a fight.
Chelsea v Maccabi Tel Aviv
Odds: 4/9 @ bet365
The shocking start to the new Premier League campaign will only make Chelsea players even more determined to record a morale-boosting victory over the Israeli champions and chances are Jose Mourinho will demand a response following the 3-1 loss to Everton. Therefore, the Blues are expected to start the match strongly and attack the opponents from the off, and with odds on home win not exactly tempting, our advice is to back the Premiership holders for a half-time/full-time win, although home win to nil is another viable option.
Dynamo Kiev v Porto
Market: Match Result
Odds: 21/10 @ bet365
Dynamo Kiev returns to the Champions League after a two-year absence and the interesting thing is that FC Porto were one of their opponents in the 2012/2013 campaign. Following the 3-2 loss in Portugal, the Ukranian giants could only muster a goalless draw in the return match and we could see a similar outcome this time out. The Dragons appear to be in better shape at the moment, while Dynamo will have home field advantage on their side, so we could see the two teams canceling each other out.
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