Champions League betting tips: Gavi caution, Mendez magic and more Union misery

The return legs of the mid-group double-header take place in UCL match week four

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betzone

7 months ago

Champions League match week four brings us a mirror image of the competitions’ match week three fixtures and two of our three UCL betting tips expect lightning that struck a fortnight ago to strike again.

Champions League match week four betting tips

Gavi (Barcelona) to be carded against Shakhtar Donetsk @ 13/8

Brais Mendez (Real Sociedad) to score anytime vs Benfica @ 14/5

Napoli to beat Union Berlin to nil @ 6/5

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Another card overdue for Champions League’s most prolific fouler

Ok, so technically Gavi didn’t get booked against Shakhtar last time out, but based on this season’s evidence there’s around 43% chance he would have done. The 19-year-old has picked up seven yellows and a red in 16 games for Barcelona this term.

Sure to be playing, not least because will the forthcoming domestic games due to suspension, the midfielder averages four fouls per game in the Champions League in 2023/24 – more than any other player involved.

Tip: Gavi (Barcelona) to be carded against Shakhtar Donetsk @ 13/8

Habitual matchwinner Mendez can punish suffering Benfica again

The Champions League spotlight has really brought the best out of Brais Mendez this season, with the former Celt Vigo man one of a host of players joint-top of the scoring charts on three goals.

His strikes so far have each made a definitive contribution to Real Sociedad’s Group D results: The opener in a 1-1 draw with Inter, the second in a 2-0 win over Red Bull Salzburg (where assisted the first) and the winner last time out, away to Benfica.

The Lisbon club have lost each of their first three matches in the section to nil and if anyone can smuggle the hosts past the Portuguese again it’s Mendez. The midfielder averages two shots per game this season, more than any of his La Real teammates.

Tip: Brais Mendez (Real Sociedad) to score anytime vs Benfica @ 14/5

Azzurri to cut loose against visitors on harrowing losing streak

Napoli have struggled to recapture the effervescent form that carried them to the Scudetto last season under Rudi Garcia, who replaced Luciano Spalletti when Italy came knocking.

However, they have retained their attacking stars Victor Osimhen and Kvicha Kravatskhelia and won’t get many better chances to rekindle the feelgood factor than playing Union Berlin at the Stadio Diego Armando Maradona in the visitors’ current sorry state.

The Germans have lost 12 in a row in all competitions, failing to score in nine of those games including each of the last five.

Granted Napoli aren’t exactly a caricature of defensive stinginess but they have kept five clean sheets in 14 games this term and shut out two of their last three opponents (one of those being the Germans).

Tip: Napoli to beat Union Berlin to nil @ 6/5