Champions League Betting Odds, Picks, Prediction, Preview, Best Bets: Can Villarreal Surprise Robert Lewandowski, Bayern Munich? (April 6)
David S. Bustamante/Soccrates/Getty Images. Pictured: Villarreal standout Gerard Moreno.
- Bayern Munich heads to Spain for Wednesday's Champions League clash with Villarreal.
- The Bavarians are big -175 ML favorites against the La Liga side, but analyst Anthony Dabbundo has found value with the underdogs.
- Check out below why he thinks The Yellow Submarine covers the spread in the first leg of this quarterfinal tie.
Villarreal vs. Bayern Munich Odds
|Bayern Munich Odds||-175|
|Over/Under||2.5 (-190 / +135)|
|Day | Time||Wednesday | 3 p.m. ET|
|How To Watch||Paramount+ | fuboTV|
|Odds updated as of Wednesday morning via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute soccer odds here.|
Villarreal advanced to the Champions League quarterfinal round after it stunned host Juventus with a 3-0 scoreline in the second leg of their tie. Now, The Yellow Submarine faces a far more difficult challenge with German champion Bayern Munich visiting Spain for Wednesday’s match.
The German powerhouse struggled in its first leg at RB Salzburg, settling for a 1-1 draw. However, the Bavarians steamrolled the Red Bulls in the second leg in a 7-1 home rout to finish ahead via an 8-2 aggregate triumph.
Borussia Dortmund’s loss on Saturday also means Bayern now has a nine-point advantage atop the Bundesliga and all of it focus shifts to the UCL after it was eliminated by Paris Saint-Germain in the quarterfinal round last season.
Villarreal has established itself as an excellent tournament team under manager Unai Emery, as The Yellow Submarine us only in this competition because it beat Arsenal and Manchester United en route to winning last season’s Europa League crown.
Even if Villarreal isn’t one of the three best teams in Spain, its ability to effectively defend deep and force high turnovers when it does high press makes Bayern a decent matchup for the Spanish club.
At least in this first leg at home, Villarreal is undervalued in the betting market.
Villarreal Dealing With Taste of Regression
Villarreal finally hit a dip in form after it was one of the best La Liga teams from January through late February. The Yellow Submarine has lost three of its last four games in the Spanish top flight, with 1-0 defeats to Cádiz and Osasuna. The club suffered a 2-0 loss to Levante this past Saturday.
Regression in form was inevitable for Villarreal and the performances were generally lackluster as well, but Emery has shown he can prepare his team effectively for a one-off tie like this match. All three losses came on the road, where Villarreal has been considerably worse than it has been at home.
Based on La Liga form alone, Villarreal has a +1.21 xG difference per 90 minutes when playing on home soil, but is actually a slightly below average side (-0.01 xG difference/90 minutes) on the road. Throw in that Bayern’s defense is a bit more open when it plays on the road (1.2 goals per game allowed vs. 0.85) and you can see how the Yellow Submarine could find some attacking success.
While Alberto Moreno remains out with an injury, Villarreal is otherwise the healthiest it has been all season. I’d expect Gerard Moreno and Arnaut Danjuma to partner up top. Throw in Danjuma’s ability to make runs into the channel between Bayern’s slow center backs and often pushed up full backs and Villarreal can effectively counterattack the visiting side.
Healthy Bayern Munich Looking Dangerous
Bayern Munich is getting healthy just in time for the team’s most important matches of the season as they reach the business end of the tournament. The Bavarians steamrolled through their group with a perfect six wins and easily overcame a Round of 16 first-leg blip against RB Salzburg by dominating the reverse fixture.
Bayern is expected to have Alphonso Davies and Leon Goretzka back at left back and central midfield, respectively. Goretzka provides added stability in midfield next to Joshua Kimmich, while Davies provides burst and pace up the left flank.
The German side is at its best when able to play up tempo and in transition, but Villarreal is unlikely to get into a back-and-forth transitional battle with its foe. When Bayern does choose to press high up the pitch as its sure to do against Villarreal, it has been vulnerable to direct counterattacks right through the middle of the pitch.
The Bavarians have seemed to have overcome their dip in form that occurred last month as they’ve now scored 16 goals in their last four games across all competitions. However, the defensive issues still exist and teams who are effective at attacking in transition — Salzburg, Hoffenheim and Bayer Leverkusen — all caused issues for this defense.
Even if Davies does return and the club is a little better, Bayern has conceded 4.2 xGA in the three games against those teams in the last month. The Bavarians’ defense was better against Union Berlin and Freiburg, but they’re much different in terms of attacking profile.
BJ Cunningham’s UCL Projections
Betting Analysis & Pick
Villarreal is sure to face a ton of high ball pressure, but the host has had a lot of success in Spain against teams who try to win the ball off them. The Yellow Submarine ranks fifth in La Liga in pressure success rate allowed and concede the third-fewest ball recoveries in the Spanish first division.
The projected back four for the Yellow Submarine are all pretty good with the ball at their feet. So, if they’re table to break that first line of pressure, Bayern’s defense can immediately be exposed beyond that. The Bavarians win this game more often than not, but my numbers suggest it ties more than the Germans win by multiple goals.
My projection makes Bayern Munich at -140 on the moneyline and thus it’s overvalued in the market at its current price of -175 odds.
I don’t think Villarreal will advance this time like the last against an overrated Juventus side, but it can play through Bayern’s high pressure and defend effectively enough to keep this game more competitive than the betting market suggests.
I’d play Villarreal +1 at -120 or better.
Pick: Villarreal +1 (-110)