Betting action from Pinnacle Sports on Champions League Round of 16, Game 1 between Roma vs Real Madrid from Stadio Olimpico, Rome.
Roma vs Real Madrid
Roma (+.75) 62.7%
Madrid (-.75) 37.3%
Joining Zenit on the dubious honours list, Roma won just one game on their way to equalling the Russian club’s 2013/14 record of qualifying with the lowest points tally in Champions League history.
Perhaps more worringly, the Italians conceded 16 goals in just six group stage matches, six of those coming in 6-1 defeat at last year’s champions Barcelona. It is perhaps unfortunate then, that they find themselves up against another free-scoring Spanish giant in the shape of Real Madrid in the last 16.
Form wise, things have improved since Luciano Spalletti returned for a second managerial stint to replace Rudi Garcia. The Romans are currently on a run of three straight victories, which should give them some confidence in a tie they are largely expected to struggle in, as seen in their odds of 5.390 to qualify.
Unbeaten in this season’s Champions League, Real Madrid romped to top spot with 16 points from a possible 18, finishing things off on matchday six with the 8-0 demolition of Malmo.
European form wasn’t enough to save Rafa Benitez his job however; the Spaniard was given his marching orders at the start of January. Club legend Zinedine Zidane took the reins shortly afterwards and has so far taken to management like a duck to water. The Madrid side have won four out of five so far under his tutelage, scoring 19 in the process.
For a side that conceded 16 in the group stage, this is perhaps worrying for Luciano Spalletti as he is tasked with the unenviable task of keeping Bale, Benzema and Ronaldo quiet for 180 minutes. Real find themselves as 1.185favourites to make the quarter-final stage.
Europa League action returns on Thursday and I’ve posted a 5% Top Play along with some analysis. Action begins Thursday afternoon and i’ll also have another card up with 3 side/total selections but for now get this midweek Top Play as we look to continue a solid week of soccer. Our Champions League card on Tuesday went 2-1 with a 4% BestBet winner to make the record 15-2 since last Thursday. Wednesday’s card is now up as well with another 4% Best Bet. Check wagertalk.com soccer news for previews and predictions and as always good luck with your wagers guys.