Midweek Mix: European quarter-finals come to a climax

It promises to be a huge midweek for Champions League and Europa League soccer as the quarter-final stage of both competitions concludes.

Here's what's coming up…

Chelsea vs FC Porto (Champions League - Tuesday 20:00 GMT)

Take one look at the outright Champions League winner odds and you will see that Chelsea are second favourites to win the competition.

That's some statement for a club which currently sits fifth in the Premier League table.

Those odds are partly based on Chelsea's immaculate performance in the first leg against Porto. Thomas Tuchel's side won 2-0 away in Portugal and the London outfit seem to be on course for the semi-finals.

The Blues have only lost one game since Tuchel's arrival and you would need to be a brave individual to go against his men in the betting.

Betting: Chelsea to win by a margin of one goal at 11/4 (SkyBet)

Paris Saint-Germain vs Bayern Munich (Champions League - Tuesday 20:00 GMT)

Television viewers across the globe were treated to an absolute classic when these two teams clashed last week.

Even though they dominated proceedings, Bayern Munich lost 3-2 on home turf and Hansi Flick's men will now need to pull off something special if they are to book a place in the semi-finals.

Robert Lewandowski won't be back for the second leg
Robert Lewandowski won't be back for the second leg

Their qualifying ambitions are going to be a lot harder due to a growing injury list which currently consists of such names as Costa, Gnabry, Sule, Tolisso and, of course, Lewandowski.

PSG also have a few key players out on the sidelines. However, their three away goals will be hard to trump.

Betting: PSG to win at 41/20 (Unibet)

Borussia Dortmund vs Manchester City (Champions League - Wednesday 20:00 GMT)

Man City's 2-1 win over Dortmund was a game that came with a fair bit of controversy. It was also a game that gave City some food for thought.

With the Bundesliga outfit struggling in the league this season, many expected the Cityzens to progress without too many dramas. That may not be the case this Tuesday night.

Dortmund are far from consistent. However, their 3-2 victory over Stuttgart will give them a bit of momentum after going three games without a win.

City, on the other hand, lost 2-1 to Leeds United at the weekend. The Cityzens never do things the easy way so don't rule out the possibility of extra time or even penalties.

Betting: The tie to go to extra time at 18/1 (bet365)

Liverpool vs Real Madrid (Champions League - Wednesday 20:00 GMT)

Real Madrid showed real class in their 3-1 first-leg win over Liverpool. The question is, can they finish the job at Anfield?

Interestingly, the two clubs have gone head-to-head four times since 2014 and the Spaniards have won every single one of these games.

Liverpool's Fabinho and Nat Phillips look despondent after conceding a third goal to Real Madrid
Liverpool's Fabinho and Nat Phillips look despondent after conceding a third goal to Real Madrid

Real's last visit to Anfield saw them claim a 3-0 victory. Even though that game took place seven years ago, a large part of that Real squad is still with the team today.

Karim Benzema grabbed two goals that day and he is well priced to get among the goals this midweek too.

Betting: Karim Benzema to score anytime at 6/5 (bet365)

AS Roma vs Ajax (Europa League - Thursday 20:00 GMT)

Following a 2-1 win in Amsterdam, AS Roma are in pole position to qualify for the semi-finals of the Europa League.

Ajax have a lot of work to do if they are to turn things around, but the task is certainly doable.

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On paper, the Dutch outfit were the better team in that opening leg against Roma. Erik ten Hag's men enjoyed more possession, more shots, and more attempts on target. However, it was Roma's clinical edge which made the difference.

Ajax have won 22 of their last 26 competitive games and they certainly have the tools to threaten the Italians. Question is, will they do enough to progress?

Betting: Ajax to win at 7/5 (William Hill)

Man United vs Granada (Europa League - Thursday 20:00 GMT)

No Harry Maguire. No Luke Shaw. No Scott McTominay. No Anthony Martial. No Eric Bailly. Man United will be without all these names when they host Granada in the second leg of their Europa League quarter-final.

United are 2-0 up after a comfortable win in Spain. However, with three players facing suspensions and two more out injured, is there a glimmer of hope for Granada?

Manchester United impressed against Spurs at the weekend
Manchester United impressed against Spurs at the weekend

The Spaniards have no choice but to throw everything on the line and try to claw their way back into the tie. This, in turn, could allow Man United to utilise their counterattacking prowess and extended their aggregate lead.

With that in mind, we could see a few goals at Old Trafford.

Betting: Over 2.5 goals at 10/11 (PaddyPower)

Slavia Prague vs Arsenal (Europa League - Thursday 20:00 GMT)

Arsenal ended their four-match winless run at the weekend with a victory against Sheffield United.

Question is, does this result highlight Arsenal's strengths or does it simply underline United's problems?

Slavia Prague scored a late equaliser against the Gunners and that away goal certainly puts them in a strong position ahead of the second leg.

The hosts will be desperate to keep a clean sheet and use the away goal rule to their advantage. Bad news for Arsenal is that Slavia certainly know how to keep a home clean sheet - they've got five from their last eight games at the Sinobo stadium.

This is going to be a close one…

Betting: Under 1.5 goals at 13/5 (PaddyPower)

Villarreal vs Dinamo Zagreb (Europa League - Thursday 20:00 GMT)

Villarreal are a goal ahead in their quarter-final tie with Dinamo Zagreb.

The Spaniards suffered a 2-1 league defeat to Osasuna this past weekend but it's worth pointing out that they won six straight games prior to that.

Villarreal's forward Gerard Moreno
Villarreal's forward Gerard Moreno

Despite playing the first leg at home, Dinamo Zagreb struggled to create opportunities and things certainly won't get any easier away at the Estadio de la Ceramica.

Betting: Villarreal to win by a margin of two goals at 3/1 (SkyBet)

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