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Charles Perrin
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Charles has been operating as a freelance sports betting content writer for roughly 5 years. Prior to that, he was the overnight digital sports editor of the Daily Express where he presided over online coverage including breaking news and live blogs as well as boosting traffic levels. He boasts an in-depth knowledge of most sports and is adept at reviewing sportsbook brands in Canada. Away from sports betting content, Charles is a keen tennis player and he is a huge Tottenham Hotspur fan.
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Champions League Betting Guide [Betting Markets to Go For]

Cover image for post Champions League Bets
Champions League Bets
Champions League Betting Guide [Betting Markets to Go For]

The Champions League is Europe’s elite soccer competition taking place each year, and it is treasured by all clubs.

Well, it is if you are crowned champions! Do you want to find the Champions League’s best bets? At LegalBet Canada, we have given you the inside track on how to do so.

The Champions League, which underwent a revamp in 1992, features 32 of Europe’s best teams, and it is a gruelling campaign.

Insofar as the number of teams that can be entered forward, this will be determined by the UEFA coefficients of each association or country competing.

Across most leagues, the top four teams will qualify for the Champions League proper, and since 2009/10, two qualification streams have been offered to teams that don’t receive direct entry to the tournament.

Streams are divided between teams that were the champions in their respective leagues, and five teams from each stream will seal a place in the group stage.

Usually, the competition gets underway at the beginning of September with a round-robin stage featuring 32 teams.

This is split into eight groups containing four sides per group. Each team will then play home and away until December.

The top two teams will qualify for the first knockout stage (Round of 16), and from there, it is purely a knockout format. Two teams will drop out, with the third-placed team ending up in the Europa League.

must-know!

Remember, teams from the same country can’t face each other until the quarter-finals.

Another rule that was scrapped for the knockout stages is away goals. Previously, away goals counted for double.

But if sides are level after 180 minutes of a two-legged tie, then extra time and penalties may be needed to secure a result.

For the eighth time around, the Final will take place at Wembley, on 1 June 2024.

Upcoming Changes to the Competition

To add another twist, from the start of the 2024/25 season, the Champions League’s governing body, UEFA, has decided to shake the format up.

The competition will be increased in size to 36 teams, and it will feature a single league phase. This will be rather testing, as the top eight teams will reach the knockout stage.

big changes

Teams that finish 9th through to 24th will then take part in a two-legged playoff to secure their progress to the Round of 16.

The remaining sides will be eliminated from the competition.

Oh, and the new-look Champions League will see representatives from the same country clash in the Round of 16 rather than the last eight as things currently stand.

Below, you can take a look at some key dates you should mark in your calendar for this season’s competition.

  • Preliminary round semi-finals: 27 June 2023
  • Preliminary round final: 30 June 2023
  • First qualifying round: 11/12 and 18/19 July 2023
  • Second qualifying round: 25/26 July and 1/2 August 2023
  • Third qualifying round: 8/9 August and 15 August 2023
  • Play-offs: 22/23 and 29/30 August 2023

Champions League Group Stages

  • Matchday 1: 19/20 September 2023
  • Matchday 2: 3/4 October 2023
  • Matchday 3: 24/25 October 2023
  • Matchday 4: 7/8 November 2023
  • Matchday 5: 28/29 November 2023
  • Matchday 6: 12/13 December 2023

Champions League Knockout Stages

  • Round of 16: 13/14/20/21 February and 5/6/12/13 March 2024
  • Quarter-finals: 9/10 and 16/17 April 2024
  • Semi-finals: 30 April/1 May and 7/8 May 2024
  • Final: 1 June 2024

The Champions League is one of the world’s most-watched and bet-on soccer competitions, and it is never short on drama.

But what are the best Champions League betting markets to wager on? We have examined some of the most popular below.

For more betting tips across different leagues and competitions, check out our soccer betting basics.

1×2

Rather than just the traditional moneyline where you can back either side to win, the draw is also factored into the equation.

1×2 betting

However, the underlying element is very similar, as you just have to predict the result. This could be either a home or away win, or a tie.

Remember, in the group stages, a solitary point is awarded for a tie, while the team that wins collects three points.

This type of bet is available at all of the sportsbooks we recommend and it is one of the best Champions League betting markets, purely for its simplicity.

Usually, American odds will be denoted to present the favourite and underdog. However, you will also be able to find decimal and fractional odds, but it’s good to know how to read both.

Let’s use this example below which is the second leg of a Champions League qualifier between PSV Eindhoven and Rangers as illustrated by Betway.

Champions League: PSV vs Rangers at Betway

As you can see, PSV are trading as strong favourites to win the second leg at 1.50 (-200), while Rangers are valued at 2.25 (+425).

So, if you put a $20 wager on PSV to win, then your total payout will be $30.

However, if you were to stick your $20 on Rangers to emerge victorious, then your payout would be much bigger. With odds of +425, you could stand to make a total return of $105.

Whereas with the draw, which is priced at 4.20 (+320), a $20 will pocket a total return of $84, so there is still some value in backing the tie.

Correct Score

The Correct Score line is a step up from the 1×2 market line, and one that is relevant for all stages of the competition.

Rather than just betting on who will win the match, you will need to predict the exact result as the name of this market suggests.

Most sportsbooks will have this market, and that includes Betano, which seems to have virtually every possible scoreline covered.

The following shows the potential Correct Score outcomes for a Champions League qualifier featuring Galatasaray and Molde.

Galatasaray vs Molde at Betano

In the above example, you could play it safe and go for a 1-0 win to Galatasaray which is priced at +690 or be bold and go for a 3-0 away victory available at +9900.

If it were the latter, then a $50 wager for Molde to win 3-0 would give you a total return of $5,000 ($4,950 + $50 representing the initial stake). This would be a very profitable move.

To Win To Nil

The best Champions League betting markets will always aim to provide value for money, and one line that is worth exploring further is the To Win to Nil section.

Here, you might wish to place a bet on the outcome of the Panathinaikos v Braga. Listed in the Specials section will be the To Win to Nil along with several other outcomes.

This option is up at bet365, and having carried out some research, you might think that Panathinaikos’ defence might hold out and keep a clean sheet.

Panathinaikos vs Braga at bet365: To Win to Nil

Panathinaikos have been priced at +333 which is slightly shorter than Braga to not ship a goal over 90 minutes.

Let’s say you placed a bet of $50 on Panathinaikos to hold firm during the 90 minutes, you stand to make $216.50 ($166.50 + your initial stake).

Props

Props add an extra dimension to things, and they are one of the best Champions League betting markets. They are wide-ranging, and they are usually split into team props and player props.

Arguably, player props merit a lot of attention, especially when they revolve around the big players, such as Manchester City hitman Erling Haaland.

These are exciting from the group stage to the Final, and there is no shortage of player props to check out at our preferred operators.

For example, this could be for a player to score a hat-trick or simply to score anytime during the 90 minutes.

Again, bet365 comes into its own for props, such as the anytime scorer line.

So, if you were wagering on PSV v Rangers in a Champions League qualifier, you could back Luuk de Jong to score for the hosts at any time at +125.

PSV v Rangers goalscorer props at bet365

A $50 bet on this outcome would produce a return of $62.50 which may not sound too much. Well, if De Jong has been firing on all cylinders, he will inevitably attract a lot of interest.

With player props, I think it is sensible to go for a player to score with slightly longer odds to get more of a return with your wager.

Betting Markets to Avoid

While we have highlighted the best Champions League betting markets, there are also a few that you should avoid, particularly in the knockout stages of the competition.

Outrights

Before the Champions League gets underway, there are always a few teams that will be tipped to do well. We’re talking about City, Bayern Munich, and Real Madrid.

But as the competition wears on, the strongest teams will always rise to the occasion, and they will know how to get the job done in the knockout stages.

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Charles Perrin
Expert Quote
Charles Perrin
About Author
Charles has been operating as a freelance sports betting content writer for roughly 5 years. Prior to that, he was the overnight digital sports editor of the Daily Express where he presided over online coverage including breaking news and live blogs as well as boosting traffic levels. He boasts an in-depth knowledge of most sports and is adept at reviewing sportsbook brands in Canada. Away from sports betting content, Charles is a keen tennis player and he is a huge Tottenham Hotspur fan.

While these are advertised as futures a couple of months before the Champions League gets underway, the odds will shift in the outrights competition. And by the time you reach the Final, if there is a gulf in class between the two sides, then some operators will suspend betting markets if it appears obvious the short-priced favourite will prevail.

Anyway, as we can see from the following image, City is the favourite at +205 to defend their title.

Champions League outrights at Bet99

So, if you put $20C on City to retain the Champions League, then this would provide a win of just $20.50.

By the time they reach the semi-finals, this price would drop further, so ideally, it is best to go for a team with longer odds in the outrights.

Parlay Bets: Yay or Nay?

Parlay bets provide an enriching betting experience for many gamblers, and that can be said of the Champions League.

Quote
Charles Perrin
Expert Quote
Charles Perrin
About Author
Charles has been operating as a freelance sports betting content writer for roughly 5 years. Prior to that, he was the overnight digital sports editor of the Daily Express where he presided over online coverage including breaking news and live blogs as well as boosting traffic levels. He boasts an in-depth knowledge of most sports and is adept at reviewing sportsbook brands in Canada. Away from sports betting content, Charles is a keen tennis player and he is a huge Tottenham Hotspur fan.

Ideally, these work best for group stage matches as there are more fixtures. Typically, an ideal parlay will have more than four selections which will be one per match.

Whereas placing a single on one team or double on two sides can be arguably safer, with more selections there is a greater level of risk involved.

Moreover, most of the sites that we work with have in-play betting, so you can stake on parlays, and cash out early if you are worried your bet will be scuppered by a late goal.

In the case of Betano and bet365, they both have live streams, so you can catch the action on the move and you will be able to see how your parlays are performing.

Same-Game Parlays

These have come more into circulation, and they can provide some of the Champions League’s best bets.

Same-game parlays (SGPs) involve betting on multiple outcomes from the same game, and usually, you will need at least four selections.

good to know!

They can cover any sections such as the Correct Score and 1×2 markets as well as player performances.

The latter can include, for example, whether Manchester City defender Nathan Ake will pick up a yellow card.

Remember, whatever you decide to bet on, all legs need to win for you to be successful with your bet.

Several of the sportsbooks we recommend have a same-game parlay builder. This is the case at Betway where there is plenty of scope for customizing your betting slip.

same-game parlays at Betway

Based on the average stake of $10, you could stand to make $120 if all parts of the same-game parlay come off.

All of the sportsbooks we recommend will have a bet calculator that will do the groundwork for you and determine what you can make from a wager. It will save you from having to calculate them yourself!

Although same-game parlays are used more often in some of the biggest leagues in the world, such as the EPL and La Liga, perhaps they will begin to take off in the Champions League.

For a fun take at the competition, check out what Champions League’s top players looked like then and now!

FAQ

Sources

Official Champions League site – uefa.com/uefachampionsleague

FourFourTwo – https://www.fourfourtwo.com/news/how-the-new-champions-league-format-actually-works

Charles Perrin<

Charles Perrin

Charles has been operating as a freelance sports betting content writer for roughly 5 years. Prior to that, he was the overnight digital sports editor of the Daily Express where he presided over online coverage including breaking news and live blogs as well as boosting traffic levels. He boasts an in-depth knowledge of most sports and is adept at reviewing sportsbook brands in Canada. Away from sports betting content, Charles is a keen tennis player and he is a huge Tottenham Hotspur fan.

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