Atletico Madrid host newcomers Malmo in the third round of group Champions League betting. Will the prohibitive favourites Atleti come through on their soccer odds or will Malmo pull the upset?
Atletico Madrid Bounce Back
Atletico Madrid finally kick-started their UEFA Champions League campaign with a 1-0 win over Juventus at the Vicente Calderon in Round 2 of group betting. A desperately needed win that saw them overtake top spot in Group A and underscore their value as one of the favourites to clinch the group at +110 futures odds.
Atleti, last season’s finalists, suffered a setback in their Group A opener against Olympiakos, beaten 3-2 on the road. While they didn’t panic prematurely, they weren’t complacent either. In a highly competitive, top-flight European competition, the pressure to advance is immense. They rose to the occasion in the second round at the expense of the Italian champions.
With their campaign on track, moving back into the mix for a spot in the knockouts, Atleti can look ahead to round 3 of Champions League betting with some measure of confidence in the face of tournament minnows Malmo. Atleti are matched as the whopping -700 favourites to win straight up.
Atleti are currently sat fourth in La Liga behind a 5-2-1 mark and 17 points. Most recently, they are after a 2-0 win over Espanyol, extending their positive home form on the season to 3-1-0 on the season.
Malmo Group Underdogs
Malmo come into the competition as massive underdogs to advance into the knockouts. They are currently trading at +5000 soccer odds to win Group A outright and long shots at +1600 to advance into the knockouts.
The Swedish hopefuls are clearly out of their depth according to odds makers, a notion underscored by their hallucinatory soccer odds and winless run through Champions League so far. They opened their campaign with a 2-0 defeat to Juventus and followed with a 2-0 defeat to Olympiakos.
On Swedish soil, things are much more promising for Malmo as they currently lead the AllSvenskan Table with 59 points behind a 17-8-3 record, nine-points clear of second-placed IFK Goteborg. They’ve netted 56 goals and conceded just 29.
Soccer Betting Verdict
This matchup is one of the most lopsided currently trading on the Champions League Betting board for round 3. Clearly, there’s a huge gap in quality and talent between the Spanish and Swedish top-flight leagues. Hence, Atleti are the indisputable home favourites at -700 to win straight up while Malmo are matched at hallucinatory +1400 soccer odds to win and at +700 to clinch the draw.
Malmo are clearly being outmatched, outplayed and outscored by the field – they’ve conceded four goals already and netted ZERO. Their inability to find the net certainly doesn’t bode well, especially against the Spanish champions, who are undefeated at home and have conceded only three goals through four domestic home games this season. Clearly, they were mindful of their upcoming date with Atleti and resting key players as they are coming off a 2-1 defeat in Swedish weekend action.
One glaring disadvantage the Swedes have is the fact that their season is already 28 matches deep – that’s a lot of football before the prestigious European competition even got off the ground. One has to wonder whether it’s all catching up to them. It’s certainly not going to get any easier, which prompts us to consider the possibility they might start to fade in this competition more significantly.
Most soccer bettors are piling onto Atletico Madrid in soccer betting markets to come away with the desired result. Betting on money line odds in this game, however, holds very little appeal where Atleti are concerned – the return on investment being so nominal. So back Atleti to win both halves at -175 soccer odds and the Over 2.5 at -143 soccer odds at Pinnacle instead.
Finally, there is the notion the Swedes would keep it close in Vicente Calderon because they weren’t swept aside by Juventus or Olympiakos, losing by 2 goals in each game. Consider the Spanish champions are finally hitting their stride. Desperate to continue their winning form in European group action, not to mention the Swedes are bound to start fading as their domestic season winds down, it would seem Atleti are primed to capitalise. Hence, we like Atletico Madrid as the 2-point chalk on the handicap for our value soccer pick of the day.
Soccer Free Picks: Atletico Madrid -2.0 +100