Real Madrid now 9/4 to end Champions League drought
Coral have slashed Real Madrid’s odds on ending their dozen-year drought in Europe, as they are now 9/4 to win the Champions League.
The Bernabeu outfit last tasted continental glory at Hampden Park in 2002, when Zinedine Zidane scored a sensational left-footed over the shoulder volley.
Carlo Ancelotti’s Real hammered a depleted Borussia Dortmund (now rank 300/1 outsiders), who were beaten finalists last season, 3-0 with Gareth Bale and competition top-scorer Cristiano Ronaldo on target.
Portugal skipper Ronaldo has now netted 14 Champions League goals in just eight European outings, is heavily odds-on at 1/10 to win the Golden Boot, but sustained a knock to his knee and was substituted.
“I’m not worried about it,” said Ancelotti. “If the niggle, which at the moment is not a worry, continues we can rest him, but the player is relaxed.”
Ronaldos’s nearest challenger Zlatan Ibrahimovic (8/1) is out of his club PSG’s second leg with Chelsea with hamstring and calf problems.
A 3-1 home victory over the Blues at the Parc des Princes has resulted in odds on Laurent Blanc’s boys lifting the European Cup being cut from 11/1 to 8/1.
Chelsea are now 22/1 shots to go all the way, but punters should remember they have been in a similar position to this in a knockout Champions League tie before and gone on to win the competitions.
Barcelona, slapped with a transfer ban for the next two windows by FIFA, are 11/2 third-favourites behind their El Clasico rivals Real and holders Bayern Munich (7/4). The Catalan giants drew 1-1 with Atletico Madrid (12/1).
Manchester United, who drew 1-1 at Old Trafford against Bayern, are 33/1 shots for the Champions League. Coral have opened a market on the stage of elimination for David Moyes and Jose Mourinho’s men.
Both Chelsea and the Red Devils are odds-on to exit Europe’s elite club competition in the quarters at 2/9 and 1/8 respectively. The Blues are 5/1 to bow out in the semis and 16/1 shots to be runners-up. United, meanwhile, are 7/1 to lose in the last four and 25/1 to fall at the final hurdle.