Champions League Betting Odds, Preview, Picks, Prediction, Best Bets: PSG Star Kylian Mbappé Gets Start Against Real Madrid
Julien de Rosa/AFP via Getty Images. Pictured: Paris Saint-Germain star Kylian Mbappé.
- Global heavyweights Real Madrid and PSG square off Wednesday's in Champions League action.
- Kylian Mbappe picked up a knock in training, so his starting status remains up in the air ahead of kickoff for the underdog Parisians.
- Jeremy Pond breaks down the match below and details why he's backing a Single Game Parlay in this meeting.
Editor’s note: Paris Saint-Germain star Kylian Mbappé will start Wednesday against Real Madrid, according to the club’s official starting lineup.
Real Madrid vs. PSG Odds
|Real Madrid Odds||+140|
|Over/Under||2.5 (-160 / +115)|
|Day | Time||Wednesday | 3 p.m. ET|
|How To Watch||CBS | Paramount+ | fuboTV|
|Odds updated as of Wednesday afternoon via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute soccer odds here.|
Global soccer titans square off Wednesday in Champions League action when Real Madrid host Paris Saint-Germain in the second leg of their Round of 16 tie at Santiago Bernabéu Stadium.
The Parisians drew first blood in the opener, earning a 1-0 win in dramatic fashion in the French capital. Kylian Mbappé pulled some magic out of his hat at Parc des Princes, scoring the game’s long goal four minutes into stoppage time to secure the victory.
However, the star could find himself as a reserve after injuring his foot in Monday’s training session. The club announced Tuesday morning that Mbappé has been included in the squad despite the knock. Whether he starts or comes off the bench remains to be seen.
Kylian Mbappe is a doubt for PSG's second leg with Real Madrid after suffering this injury in training 😨 pic.twitter.com/lZF725rPBN
— beIN SPORTS USA (@beINSPORTSUSA) March 7, 2022
On the other side, Los Blancos have won three on the bounce, including a 4-1 victory against Real Sociedad this past weekend. That win came after three-point efforts against Alavés (3-0) and Rayo Vallecano (1-0), which have Real Madrid atop the table and eight points clear of Sevilla in the Spanish top flight.
Oddsmakers have made Real Madrid slight +140 favorites on the three-way moneyline, with PSG checking in at +170 and the draw sitting at +260 odds. The total of 2.5 goals is juiced to -160, while the under is at ripe +115 odds at BetMGM as of writing.
Let’s see where we can find some betting value in this matchup.
Real Madrid Must Flip Script From First Leg
Los Blancos were really outclassed, largely by their own doing and tactical approach in the opening fixture. And bottom line, they’re lucky they escaped with only a 1-0 loss as you’ll see from the match statistics below.
Surprising to me was the fact Real Madrid were ultra-content in sitting back and playing for the road draw. Los Blancos only held 43 percent of possession, plus they were outshot by a whopping 21-3 margin that included a 7-0 edge to the Parisians in attempts on target.
Obviously, this dominance included Mbappé on the pitch. And sure, PSG manager Mauricio Pochettino has an array of weapons at his disposal, but a player like him is irreplaceable and makes the club less dangerous going forward in the attack.
So, if Mbappé isn’t fit to go a full 90 minutes (or potentially more) that could play into Real Madrid’s hands.
However, Los Blancos have some personnel issues of their own. Midfielder Casemiro and defender Ferland Mendy are suspended due to caution accumulation. The good news is midfielder Toni Kroos, who was reportedly set to miss out due to injury, has made the starting lineup.
Needless to say, the loss of Casemiro is massive for Real Madrid and its game approach. He’s a void manager Carlo Ancelotti is tasked with filling to keep his side from not getting run over by the PSG attack in that part of the pitch.
Mbappé’s Status Casts Cloud Over PSG
All eyes will be on Mbappé and his playing status leading up to kickoff. Not having arguably the world’s most prolific talisman to start would be tough for PSG for a couple of reasons, specifically on the statistical front.
The French international has 19 goals and 15 assists in a combined 31 matches between league and UCL play, but the attention he draws from opposing sides’ defenses consistently frees up others to do damage in the Parisians’ offensive third of the pitch. Needless to say, if you take Mbappé out the equation it’s a huge problem no longer on Real Madrid’s plate.
When it comes to the advanced metrics and statistics from the first meeting, PSG absolutely dominated affairs across the board. The folks at The xG Philosophy had the Parisians finishing with a 1.91-0.3 expected-goals edge , which was nice considering they held a bigger 2.6-0.1 xG advantage over Los Blancos, according to the data gurus at fbref.com.
Messi’s penalty is SAVED 😱
Courtois keeps the score level between PSG & Real Madrid in the Champions League @brfootball
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) February 15, 2022
Bottom line, the Parisians had a chance to put this tie to bed on home soil, but their lack of finishing — including Lionel Messi coming up empty from the spot in the 62nd minute — has given their Spanish counterparts life ahead of this clash.
Prior to Mbappé’s injury, it would seem like things were generally hunky-dory with the soon-to-be Ligue 1 champions, but that hasn’t been the case.
The Parisians have lost back-to-back away games in the French top flight, suffering defeats at the hands of Nantes (3-1) and, most recently, Nice (1-1) this past weekend. Pochettino’s side looked completely out of sorts in the latest setback, breaking even in a 0.7-0.7 xG battle with Les Aiglones.
BJ Cunningham’s UCL Projections
Betting Analysis & Pick
With Real Madrid in dire need of a result combined with their issues in the midfield, I thoroughly believe we’re going to see a wide-open affair featuring plenty of scoring opportunities.
So, for that reason, I’m backing a Single Game Parlay pairing Both Teams To Score (Yes) with the game total clearing 2.5 goals at -115 odds via BetMGM and will make it my top pick.
If you’re looking for a side, I’d lean toward Real Madrid via the Draw No Bet wager at -125 odds on DraftKings if Mbappé doesn’t start. I recommend keeping an eye on the price of this wager since some shops like BetMGM and PointsBet could see their numbers change closer to kickoff. As of writing, BetMGM has this at -135, while PointsBet is sandwiched in at -130 odds.
Lastly, if player props are your thing or you’d simply like to just dabble in that market, target Real Madrid winger Marco Asensio on the following bets:
- Asensio — Two (2) or more Shots of Target (+175)
- Asensio to Score Anytime (+250)
- Asensio to Score & Real Madrid to Win (+400)
Now, I wouldn’t go putting the mortgage or rent on these wagers, but I find all three angles worthy of a look. The Spanish international has six combined shots on target in his last three appearances, two of which wound up as goals. Asensio came in the 77th minute of Sunday’s match against Real Sociedad, scoring two minutes later to close out the victory.
Obviously, the attention falls on Benzema and fellow standout Vinícius Júnior (13 goals/six assists), which could create some chances for Real Madrid’s third-best attacking option.
Pick: Single Game Parlay — Both Teams To Score (Yes) & Total Over 2.5 Combined Goals (-110)
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