So there’s plenty left to play for, and this week’s set of fixtures will go a long way towards determining who qualifies for the last 16, who finishes bottom and – worst of all – who has to play in the Europa League by virtue of finishing third.
Where does the pick of the betting value lie this Wednesday?
Qarabag vs Chelsea (Wednesday, 5pm)
It really is difficult to get an accurate read on FK Qarabag, the erstwhile Azerbaijanis making their Champions League debut.
They were dismantled 0-6 by Chelsea in their opener, but in their three games since suffered a narrow one-goal defeat to Roma and drew twice with last season’s finalists Atletico Madrid.
Incredibly, they could still go through to the last 16, mathematically speaking!
So put your assertions to one side and consider that, on home soil at least, this is an outfit that are going to put up a hell of a fight.
Chelsea can book their place in the knockout stages of the competition with victory here, and we fully expect them to do so. Just don’t expect them to romp home.
Qarabag +1.50 Asian Handicap (23/25 with bet365)
Basel vs Manchester United (Wednesday, 7:45pm)
Something of a surprise package in Group A, Basel can qualify for the last 16 of the Champions League if they match CSKA Moscow’s results from here on in. Baring in mind that the Russians’ last game is at Old Trafford, the Swiss side stand every chance.
But of course they must first circumnavigate this tricky tie, and their schizophrenic home form – beating Benfica 5-0, losing 1-2 to CSKA – offers no real clues as to Basel’s relative ability.
United will have been buoyed by their 4-1 win over Newcastle at the weekend after some stodgy form, and Jose Mourinho being the pragmatist he is will fancy another three points here. Enjoy that confidence, because as soon as the big boys come to town he’ll be parking that bus again!
Manchester United to Win (21/20 with Betfred)
Anderlecht vs Bayern Munich (Wednesday, 7:45pm)
This game catches the eye simply because Anderlecht have lost their four Champions League outings to date 0-3 (twice), 0-4 and 0-5.
So they can’t score, can’t defend, and here tackle a Bayern Munich side who are nearing their best form under new boss Jupp Heynckes.
The Germans have won their last five Bundesliga outings, scoring 14 times and conceding once, and they enjoyed a 5-1 ‘aggregate’ win over Celtic in their double-header of fixtures.
As such, it really is gobsmacking to see such a price available for the selection below.
Bayern to Win to Nil (6/4 with Betfred)