Heralded as the most elite club soccer tournament on the planet, the Champions League is one of the most highly wagered events on each season's soccer calendar.
Beginning with three knockout qualifying rounds in July before most domestic European leagues have even laced their boots, the UEFA Champions League is quickly whittled down to 32 elite teams who compete in the group stage. The winner of each group plays the runners-up of another group which ultimately decides the 8 teams that will play in the knockout phase of the tournament. Knockout games are played in a two-legged (home and away for each team) format, with the exception of the final which is normally held in the last 2 weeks of May.
It's like a more in-depth, much more complex and longer lasting World Cup format with the ultimate champion staking its claim as the best club team on the planet.
Picking a tournament winner is no mean feat. Since it was founded in 1952, 22 teams have triumphed, and even since its rebranding in 1992 there have been 13 different winners. In fact, the UEFA Champions League is so competitive that no team has retained the title since AC Milan won in 1989 and 1990. Over the past two decades, 80% of winners were either winners or runners-up in their domestic league during the preceding season.
Interestingly though, every Champions League winner between 2012 and 2015 had finished runners-up in the preceding domestic season; so it seems talent and hunger is a useful combination. In recent seasons Real Madrid have triumphed, with Champions League wins in the 2015-2016 and 2016-2017 competitions. If you’re not quite ready to pick a tournament winner, backing a team to reach the final, or to exit at a specific stage of the tournament, can be a better way to capitalize on your knowledge.
Unlike domestic leagues like the Premier League in England, deciding on who will score the most goals in the Champions League comes down to two key factors: weak opposition in the group stages and the potential for the team to progress. Sometimes this means backing the big names, but surprises aren't uncommon. Take into account the player’s form in their domestic season to see whether they’re in firing form.
With fewer teams involved in each group, betting in the group winner market and backing teams to qualify (or not) have far fewer variables than the tournament market on the whole. As a result, odds will be slightly lower, but you have a good chance of earning small, regular returns. If you think you’ve spotted a particularly divided group, or a striker who could surprise, but perhaps not last the distance to finish as top goal scorer in the tournament, many online gambling sites also allow you to bet on group and team top goal scorers. The group stages are also better indicators of the ultimate winner than you may think. Many recent Champions League winners have won their groups on the way to the final, so don’t be afraid to make bold predictions based on success early on.
Individual match betting in the UEFA Champions League also has a distinct flavor. As well as assessing the usual mix of form, strengths, weaknesses and strategy, there are additional considerations to factor in. Talk of a ‘Champions League hangover’ dominates domestic leagues following midweek Champions League fixtures, and there can be no doubt that this factors into managers' calculations. With key matches approaching in domestic leagues, you may want to consider whether a manager will rest his best players players: particularly against weaker opposition.
This can have an effect on numerous markets, from the final result to more specific markets, including total goals scored. Once the tournament reaches the knockout phases, match tactics are also affected by the fact that matchups are contested over two legs. Reluctance to concede away goals, the advantage of playing the home leg first and the need to overcome aggregate scores should all be factored into gamblers’ betting strategies.
If you’re considering getting into Champions League betting, the chances are you’ll want to get right into the action. In-play betting when it comes to soccer betting is the best way to do just that. When betting on player markets, such as first, last, or next goal scorer, it’s worth tracking a player’s domestic form to see if there’s been a dip since their last Champions League outing. On the broader markets, tracking the ebb and flow of a game is vital.
Watch for key changes like cards, substitutions and changing formations, which can give an indication that a team is about to switch up their game. Live statistics, shown in the in-play betting console of top gambling sites, are also vital in obtaining an objective overview and monitoring tricky stats.
Check out US sports betting sites to know about sign up process, where you can bet online, what sports you can bet on etc.
Futures betting on the Champions League is very popular and online bookmakers will create a plethora of betting markets for those who want to enjoy a longer-lasting wager on this competition.
Champions League futures bets include:
Many of these futures markets are available during the course of the Champions League campaign. You might bet on the Tournament Winner market in September and then revise your opinion in February and decide to place another bet on the latest market.
Champions League match bets include:
In addition, many betting customers like to place Champions League accumulator bets on this competition. During the group stage, there are eight matches taking place on the same evening and that offers up the chance to place accas and other multiple bets on the action.
Champions League In-Play bets include:
|2020||Bayern Munich||Paris Saint-Germain||1-0||Estádio da Luz, Lisbon|
|2019||Liverpool||Tottenham Hotspur||2-0||Wanda Metropolitano, Madrid|
|2018||Real Madrid||Liverpool||3-1||NSC Olimpiyskiy Stadium, Kiev|
|2017||Real Madrid||Juventus||4-1||Millennium Stadium, Cardiff|
|2016||Real Madrid||Atletico Madrid||1-1 (Real won on pens)||San Siro, Milan|
|2014||Real Madrid||Atletico Madrid||4-1 (a.e.t.)||Estadio da Luz, Lisbon|
|2013||Bayern Munich||Borussia Dortmund||2-1||Wembley Stadium, London|
|2012||Chelsea||Bayern Munich||1-1 (Chelsea won on pens)||Allianz Arena, Munich|
|2011||Barcelona||Manchester United||3-1||Wembley Stadium, London|
|2010||Internazionale||Bayern Munich||2-0||Santiago Bernabeu Stadium, Madrid|
|2009||Barcelona||Manchester United||2-0||Stadio Olimpico, Rome|
|2008||Manchester United||Chelsea||1-1 (United won on pens)||Luzhniki Stadium, Moscow|
The tournament begins around the middle of October and many soccer fans enjoy placing bets on the Champions League Winner market that is priced up immediately after the previous season has finished and we know the teams who have qualified for the renewal. From September to December, the Champions League group stage is staged, with eight groups comprising of four teams that means each club plays six matches. The top two teams from each section then go through to the knockout stage played in February and early March.
Clubs do need to be among the highest-performing in their particular country, with the clubs occupying the top four positions in leading European competitions like the English Premier League and Spanish La Liga getting an entry. For lesser European nations, they might only be represented by one or two clubs in the Champions League, while many teams from all over Europe have to go through the qualification process that begins as early as July in order to stand a chance of making it to the group phase.
Yes, all of the top bookmakers will offer betting markets on the Champions League.
The Champions League winner will receive €19,000,000, with the runner-up taking home €15,000,000.
The Champions League was originally called the European Cup and started in 1955 when it was won by Real Madrid. It was rebranded as the Champions League in 1992.
Cristiano Ronaldo is the all-time Champions League top goalscorer. Lionel Messi is his nearest challenger in second place.
"Two decades covering sports and the evolution of online betting. My experience as a handicapper uniquely qualifies me to evaluate which operator is best."
Reviewer since August 2019