With Champions League group play nearly over – five teams have already clinched a place in the knockout rounds – Matchday 5 is once again all about Barcelona.
Xavi’s team needs to beat Bayern Munich and have Viktoria Plzen stun Inter Milan. Otherwise, it will be back to the Europa League. The La Liga club currently has just a 7% chance of making it out of Group C, according to FiveThirtyEight.
One of Barcelona’s La Liga rivals, Atletico Madrid, is also in danger of failing to advance from group play. Whether Atleti (-125) will get the three points they need against Bayer Leverkusen (+360) will be another major storyline.
The matchups this week are the same as the ones we saw on Matchday 2 back in mid-September.
Champions League group play will conclude next week (Nov. 1-2) with each club meeting the same opponent they faced on Matchday 1.
- All kickoff times listed are US Eastern, and the home team is listed first.
- All matches are available to watch in the US on Paramount+.
- The moneyline odds listed for each game are from DraftKings Sportsbook.
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TIER 1: MUST-SEE
1. Barcelona (+135 odds) vs. Bayern Munich (+185 odds) Wednesday, 3 p.m.
Is Barcelona going to be eliminated regardless of what happens on Matchday 6?
In shocking news, Bayern Munich has handled its business in group play. That means that no matter how their next two games go, they’re going through, and almost certainly finishing first in Group C. Barcelona pushed Bayern Munich for a half when these teams met on Matchday 2, but failed to score any goals and ended up losing 2-0.
Pick consideration: Stay away from this one, because it’s hard to know how Bayern will approach a game that means infinitely more to their opponents than it does to them.
2. Atletico Madrid (-125 odds) vs. Bayer Leverkusen (+360 odds) Wednesday, 3 p.m.
Can Atleti once again narrowly survive group play?
The good news for Diego Simeone’s team is that it controls its own destiny in Group B. The bad news is that Atleti needs at least a result at home against Leverkusen and will likely need to beat Porto next week to go through.
Pick consideration: Expect a low-scoring match. Atleti has been shut out in its last three Champions League matches, a 2-0 loss to Leverkusen, a 2-0 loss to Club Brugge, and a 0-0 draw against Club Brugge. The safe play here is Under 2.5 Total Goals (-105). Under 1.5 Total Goals (+290) is a solid higher-risk move.
3. Tottenham (-225 odds) vs. Sporting Lisbon (+600 odds) Wednesday, 3 p.m.
Tottenham looks to wrap up a trip to the round of 16
Spurs are in first place in their group with seven points, but both Wednesday’s opponent and Marseille are right on their heels with six points apiece. A win over Sporting Lisbon would all but seal a top-two finish. But a loss or draw would mean Antonio Conte’s team would have work still to do on Matchday 6.
Pick consideration: It’s hard to imagine Tottenham losing at home, and oddsmakers clearly don’t view Sporting Lisbon as a major threat in this one. But given Tottenham lost 2-0 to Sporting in September, Double Chance (Tie or Sporting Lisbon) +180 offers value.
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TIER 2: WORTH A LOOK (AND A SHORTER BREAKDOWN)
4. RB Salzburg (+380 odds) vs. Chelsea (-130 odds) Tuesday, 12:45 p.m.
How does Chelsea respond to back-to-back draws in the EPL?
Chelsea leads Group E with seven points after beating AC Milan on both Matchday 3 and Matchday 4. With a win over RB Salzburg, Chelsea would lock up its place in the round of 16. These teams played to a 1-1 draw when they met on Sept. 14, but that was before Thomas Tuchel was replaced by Graham Potter.
5. Inter Milan (-800 odds) vs. Viktoria Plzen (+2200 odds) Wednesday, 12:45 p.m.
Why should we care about a game where the favorite is -800?
As the odds make clear, Inter should have no trouble with Viktoria Plzen. This game is classified as Tier 2 because of the ramifications it has for Barcelona. An Inter victory would send the Serie A side through, so Barcelona’s massive fanbase will be glued to this one hoping for a miracle by massive underdog Viktoria Plzen.
6. Dinamo Zagreb (+350) vs. AC Milan (-125) Tuesday, 3 p.m.
Can AC Milan keep their hopes alive?
With a win in Zagreb, AC Milan would enter Matchday 6 with a legitimate chance to finish second in Group E and advance to the knockout rounds. AC Milan has played well in Serie A, but both losses to Chelsea were ugly. Still, with a win over Dinamo Zagreb and a Chelsea win over RB Salzburg, AC Milan would have a good shot to advance going into their final match of group play next week.
7. Borussia Dortmund (+425 odds) vs. Manchester City (-165 odds) Tuesday, 3 p.m.
How many goals will Erling Haaland score?
City are already going through, and Dortmund should also advance with no problem. Still, fans should tune in just to see Haaland against his old team. At this point, it makes more sense to ask how many goals Haaland will score instead of wondering whether he will.
Pick consideration: There’s little value in betting on Haaland Anytime Scorer (-165), but Haaland First Scorer (+230) is tempting.
8. Benfica (+100 odds) vs. Juventus (+285 odds) Tuesday, 3 p.m.
Can Benfica officially eliminate Juventus?
Any result for Benfica (either a win or a draw) means they’d advance to knockout play at the expense of Juventus. Benfica won in Turin when these teams met on Matchday 2. With just one win in its first four Champions League games, Juve are on their way out of the Champions League.
Pick consideration: Benfica (+100) at home are great value against a team they beat on the road 2-1 on Matchday 2 in a game the Portuguese side dominated after an early Juve goal.
TIER 3: WHAT ELSE ARE YOU DOING WITH YOUR AFTERNOON?
9. Celtic (-120 odds) vs. Shakhtar Donetsk (+320 odds) Tuesday, 3 p.m.
Shakhtar Donetsk can stay in the mix for a second-place finish in Group F if they beat Celtic, who have looked overmatched in this group.
10. RB Leipzig (+180 odds) vs. Real Madrid (+155 odds) Tuesday, 3 p.m.
Real Madrid are already guaranteed a spot in the knockout rounds. Still, this is worth a look because as the line indicates, it should be close.
11. Club Brugge (+235 odds) vs. Porto (+120 odds) Wednesday, 12:45 p.m.
Club Brugge has turned heads with their nearly perfect play (three wins and a draw) through four games.
Pick consideration: Against a team with nothing to play for, Porto (+120) are a good bet in a crucial game for their chances to advance.
12. Eintracht Frankfurt (+135) vs. Marseille (+215) Wednesday, 3 p.m.
The Bundesliga club is in last place in Group D with four points, but they’re just three points back of first-place Tottenham. A home win over Marseille would keep them alive going into their potentially do-or-die Matchday 6 showdown with Sporting Lisbon.
TIER 4: BACKGROUND SOCCER (IN NO PARTICULAR ORDER)
13. Paris St. Germain (-1100 odds) vs. Maccabi Haifa (+2500 odds) Tuesday, 3 p.m.
14. Napoli (-450 odds) vs. Rangers (+1200 odds) Wednesday, 3 p.m.
15. Sevilla (-230 odds) vs. FC Copenhagen (+700 odds) Tuesday, 12:45 p.m.
16. Ajax (+300 odds) vs. Liverpool (-120 odds) Wednesday, 3 p.m.
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