RB Leipzig take on Liverpool in the first leg of their Champions League last 16 knockout stage tie at 8pm on Tuesday.
The match will be played at Puskas Stadium in Budapest due to German travel restrictions preventing anyone from England, where a new variant of COVID-19 is present, entering the country.
As such, although this is Leipzig’s home leg by default, their incredibly strong home record this season is rendered almost irrelevant.
The Reds are 13/10 favourites to win the match, with the draw 13/5 and a Leipzig win 2/1.
Personally, with Liverpool losing five of their last seven games and Leipzig winning five of their last six, I think 2/1 on Julian Nagelsmann’s side winning represents good value.
Put simply, they are a more reliable outfit than Liverpool at present, and showed by beating Manchester United in their decisive group stage encounter that they are mentally and tactically stronger than in previous years.
Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah will undoubtedly pose Nagelsmann’s side huge problems, though, but you would expect the 33-year-old to have learned the lessons of their thrashing at Old Trafford and adjust their defensive line accordingly.
In terms of a Bet Builder, one card for each team landed in 11 of these sides’ 12 combined group stage games, and has done so in 15 of referee Slavko Vincic’s last 20 matches in UEFA competitions.
Given the stakes of the game, I am confident this part of the bet should comfortably land. I will also back Leipzig to score given Liverpool’s defensive issues.
To get us above evens, I’ll also back each team to earn 3+ corners. Leipzig hit his mark in all six group stage games, with Liverpool doing so in four of their six, but both sides look to play progressively and with plenty of width:
If you’re looking for a bigger price, BTTS, 3+ corners each team and 2+ cards each team is 4/1.
Bet365 are offering their free in-play bet (check your account for T&C’s), so I’m sure plenty of you will be looking for a longshot to back.
In terms of player cards, Dayot Upamecano and Thiago Alcantara feel like the most likely players to be booked from either side (providing Fabinho misses out through injury as expected).
Both players have been booked three times in the league this season, with Upamecano cautioned three times in five CL games. Thiago missed the entirety of the group stage through injury, but was booked twice for Bayern in the CL last season and has looked a bit of a liability defensively in his fledgling Liverpool career.
The double pays 10/1, although you can add Leipzig to win & BTTS for a very tasty 50/1.
Other candidates would be Kevin Kampl and Marcel Sabitzer in the middle of the Leipzig midfield, and Nordi Mukiele given that he will potentially be up against Mane, although which back five Nagelsmann selects is generally pretty difficult to predict.
A Thiago, Kampl or Sabitzer and Mukiele treble pays an eye-watering 125/1 at Betfair.
Mane to score a header looks a big price at 16/1 on there, too.