Download the App Image

European Soccer Best Bets, Projected Odds & Forecast for Bundesliga, Serie A, La Liga, More (Feb. 4-7)

European Soccer Best Bets, Projected Odds & Forecast for Bundesliga, Serie A, La Liga, More (Feb. 4-7) article feature image
Credit:

Pedro Salado/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images. Pictured: Barcelona striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.

The international break is over, which means European club soccer returns this week with a full slate of fixtures. The Premier League is still on break due to the FA Cup, but the Bundesliga, Serie A, La Liga and Ligue 1 are in action.

Before the hiatus, there were a few crazy matches  like Real Madrid drawing with Elche and Borussia Dortmund winning a five-goal thriller against Hoffenheim. However, nothing topped Atlético Madrid’s two stoppage-time goals to beat Valencia in La Liga action.

Is there anything better than a late winner? 🤩

🔴 @mariohermoso5 ⚪️

📽️ @livescore | #360clip pic.twitter.com/PT864ieOir

— LaLiga English (@LaLigaEN) January 25, 2022

This weekend, there are several huge matches like Bayern Munich going up against RB Leipzig; a big Italian derby between Inter Milan and AC Milan; Barcelona taking on Atlético Madrid; and Lille facing Paris Saint-Germain.

With some players returning from the break, this would be an important moment to say my projections below don’t take into account suspensions or injuries. That, along with the ever-changing COVID-19 news, makes it very important to stay on top of who’s in or out of the lineups before placing a bet.

If you’d like to read more about how I determine my projections, you can check it all out here.

You can use these projections to identify betting value on current lines, plus follow me in The Action Network App to see any bets I make during the week.

Bundesliga Projections

Best Bets

Augsburg vs. Union Berlin

Augsburg Odds +190
Union Berlin Odds +145
Draw +240
Over/Under 2.5 (+105 / -125)
Day | Time Saturday | 9:30 a.m. ET
How To Watch ESPN+
Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute Soccer odds here.

I love this spot for Union Berlin, who has been playing very well over the past few months despite not having their best striker — Taiwo Awoniyi — for three matches because he was at the Africa Cup of Nations with Nigeria.

Awoniyi is a big part of this offense, considering he leads the team with nine goals and has a 0.62 expected goals per 90-minute scoring rate. So, having him back against one of the worst defenses in the Bundesliga should do wonders for the Union Berlin attack. 

Taiwo Awoniyi has been on 🔥 this #Bundesliga season… and it's no wonder with finishes like that for @FCUnion_EN! 🎯 👏 pic.twitter.com/wHSvcjgzSz

— Bundesliga English (@Bundesliga_EN) October 27, 2021

Augsburg is dead last in the German top flight in NPxG allowed, conceding 1.69 per match this season. They’ve also allowed 39 big scoring chances, which is a major problem against an opponent that has created the sixth-most big scoring chances in the league.

The main problem is Augsburg doesn’t possess the ball that much. They’re very direct in their attacking, but their direct speed is top three in the league. The problem with that is if you don’t have good structure and your midfield gets pushed too far up the pitch, you’re exposed at the back and that’s where Union Berlin can exploit them and create big scoring chances.

Even though the Augsburg offense now has Ricardo Pepi, it’s still one of the worst in Germany. They’re bottom five in pretty much every single offensive metric. In contrast, Union Berlin is a fantastic defensive outfit, usually playing in a 3-5-2 formation. That has allowed them some flexibility and it has been working because they only concede 1.25 xG per 90 minutes in it and yielded the third-fewest big scoring chances in the Bundesliga.

I have Union Berlin projected as a +103 favorite on the road, so I love their Draw No Bet line at -125 and would play it up to -140 odds.

Pick: Union Berlin — Draw No Bet (-125)


Bayern Munich vs. RB Leipzig

Bayern Munich Odds -245
RB Leipzig Odds +600
Draw +425
Over/Under 3.5 (+100 / -120)
Day | Time Saturday | 12:30 p.m. ET
How To Watch ESPN+
Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute Soccer odds here.

Bayern Munich is putting up some of the most impressive numbers I’ve seen in a long time, averaging 2.78 xG per match, 20.5 shots per 90 minutes, 22.1 box entries per 90 minutes and 3.5 big scoring chances per 90 minutes.

The Bavarians have only been held under two xG four times in their 20 Bundesliga matches so far this season. 

Quite simply, the best. 👑

We've run out of other words to describe @Lewy_Official, perhaps you can give us a helping hand. 👇✍️ pic.twitter.com/yG8o9pmG4V

— Bundesliga English (@Bundesliga_EN) February 2, 2022

Bayern obliterated RB Leipzig when these two met back in September, winning in a 4-1 rout. The Bavarians dominated the xG battle, finishing with a massive 4.2-0.25 advantage to go along with 32 shot-creating actions and touches in RB Leipzig’s penalty area.

Julian Naglesmann knows his former club so well and will have his team ready because we have to remember, this match is important for Bayern, who are only six points ahead of Dortmund in the table. 

RB Leipzig’s offense has really come alive since Jesse Marsch was sacked. In the six Bundesliga matches that Domenico Tedesco has been in charge, the Red Bulls averaged 2.47 xG and have created 21 big scoring chances. In fact, RB Leipzig’s average of 2.1 xG per game for the season is fifth best in Europe’s top-five leagues. 

🔺 @RBLeipzig_EN are flying 🆙 the #Bundesliga table

The race 🏎️ for Europe is hotting 🔥 up. pic.twitter.com/lqSp92wIff

— Bundesliga English (@Bundesliga_EN) February 2, 2022

Their defense has been improving, only allowing only 5.7 xG in their last six matches, but Bayern is a completely different animal than the teams they’ve faced in those four contests. 

I have 4.11 goals projected, so I love total clearing 3.5 goals at +100 and would play it up to -120 odds.

Pick: Total Over 3.5 Goals (+100)


Serie A Projections

Best Bets

Fiorentina vs. Lazio

Fiorentina Odds +140
Lazio Odds +200
Draw +245
Over/Under 2.5 (-135 / +115)
Day | Time Saturday | 2:45 p.m. ET
How To Watch Paramount+
Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute Soccer odds here.

Dusan Vlahovic, Fiorentina’s best player and leading goal scorer, has moved onto Juventus. And that has left a huge whole up front in the attack. Vlahovic had not only scored 17 of their 41 goals, but had also created 34% of their xG this season. Fiorentina did bring Arthur Cabral from Basel as a replacement, but who knows if he will feature in this match.

Without Vlahovic, it’s hard to see how negative regression doesn’t hit Fiorentina’s offense like a ton of bricks, considering they’re 10th in shots per 90 minutes and ninth in big scoring chances.

Lazio has also been over-performing drastically on offense this season. They’ve scored 46 goals from 30.1 xG and that’s biggest over-performance among Europe’s top five leagues. In fact, their last seven matches alone, Lazio has scored 14 goals off of only 8.3 xG overall.

Dusan Vlahovic's Serie A statistics:

🗓 21/22
‣ 20 apps
‣ 16 goals (9.87 xG)
‣ 2 assists (1.90 xA)

🗓 20/21
‣ 35 apps
‣ 21 goals (18.11 xG)
‣ 3 assists (1.94 xA)

That's 37 goals (27.98 xG) in the last season-and-a-half.#AFC pic.twitter.com/CZ55mIyCua

— Sporting Life Football & Infogol (@InfogolApp) January 7, 2022

Lazio is also incredibly reliant on big scoring chances, as they have the third most in Serie A, but are 15th in shots per 90 minutes. So, negative regression is coming in a big way for manager Maurizio Sarri’s men.

Even though Fiorentina’s offense has over-performed, their defense has been incredibly solid, allowing only 1.21 xG per match and is tops in Italy in shots allowed/90 minutes and box entries yielded per 90 minutes, per fbref.com. So, with two offenses drastically overdue for negative regression, this is a good spot to back an under.

I only have 2.21 goals projected for this match, so I like the value on the total staying under 2.5 goals at +115 and would play it down to -110 odds.

Pick: Total Under 2.5 Goals (+115)

The must-have app for Soccer bettors

The best soccer betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Udinese vs. Torino

Udinese Odds +190
Torino Odds +150
Draw +240
Over/Under 2.5 (+110 / -130)
Day | Time Sunday | 12 p.m. ET
How To Watch Paramount+
Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute Soccer odds here.

Torino continues to put incredible underlying metrics in Serie A. In fact, they’ve only lost the xG battle once in their last 12 matches and that was on the road against Inter Milan.

They drew 1-1 with Sassuolo in their last game before the break, but captured the xG battle by a wide 2.78-0.70 margin and had a 21-6 edge in shots.

*(graphic via infogol.net)

Torino is second in Serie A, allowing only 0.80 NPxG per match. They’re also second in shots allowed per 90 minutes, third in big scoring chances and third in box entries conceded per 90 minutes. Torino is also the No. 1 pressing team in Italy by PPDA, which is very crucial in this matchup because Udinese is 19th in Offensive PPDA, per understat.com.

Udinese has also been in really bad form over the past month. They’ve failed to create more than one xG in their last four games and only were able to muster just two total shots in their last contest against a very poor Genoa team.

The Udinese defense isn’t much better, as they’re 12th in NPxG allowed and — most importantly — 19th in PPDA and have forced the second-fewest high turnovers in Serie A this season. That’s important, because if Torino does have one weakness it’s facing teams that press them at a high, successful rate.

Offensively, Torino has trashed teams below them in the table, averaging 1.60 xG in 12 matches and has a +8.1 xGD thus far. So, I think it’s a little crazy that they’re close to a Pick’em at Udinese.

I have Torino projected as a -104 favorite, so I like their Draw No Bet line at -125 odds.

Pick: Torino — Draw No Bet (-125)


La Liga Projections

Best Bets

Barcelona vs. Atlético Madrid

Barcelona Odds +135
Atlético Madrid Odds +210
Draw +240
Over/Under 2.5 (-125 / +105)
Day | Time Sunday | 10:15 a.m. ET
How To Watch ESPN+
Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute Soccer odds here.

I think you could only describe the January transfer window for Barcelona as “desperate” in my opinion. Sure, they he brought in Emerson Royal, Adama Traoré and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, but I highly doubt any of those guys are going to feature in this match.

Barcelona has improving greatly under manager Xavi, averaging 1.53 xGF per game compared to only 0.80 xGA per outing. However, playing against a team like Atlético Madrid is a different animal.

Atlético Madrid has had Barcelona’s number the past few seasons. They’ve already beaten them, 2-0, and won and drew against them last year. Also, Barcelona failed to create more than 1.1 xG in any of those three matches.

Atlético Madrid is the No. 1 team in the Spanish top flight in NPxG allowed, shots conceded per 90 minutes, big scoring chances yielded and box entries allowed. In fact, they’re only allowing 0.79 xG per match, which is the third-best mark among Europe’s top five leagues.

We’ll see what the pace of this game is, but my guess is it’s going to be pretty slow. Barcelona has the second-slowest sequence time and the second 10-plus pass sequences, per Opta. Atlético Madrid will be perfectly fine sitting back in their 4-4-2 formation and trying to hit Barcelona on the counterattack. Also, in the last three meetings, there was less than 2.5 total xG created.

I have 2.3 goals projected for this match, so I like the value on the total staying under 2.5 goals at +105 odds.

Pick: Total Under 2.5 Goals (+105)


Real Betis vs. Villarreal 

Real Betis Odds +140
Villarreal Odds +190
Draw +255
Over/Under 2.5 (-140 / +110)
Day | Time Sunday | 12:30 p.m. ET
How To Watch ESPN+
Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute Soccer odds here.

Villarreal’s performances have been fantastic since the start of December. In their last eight matches, the Yellow Submarine is averaging 2.93 xG per match, while only allowing 0.98 xG per game. They played Sevilla, Real Sociedad, and Atletico Madrid in those eight matches as well. That offensive run has them second in La Liga, behind only Real Madrid in NPxG, creating 1.56 per outing.

The main reason for that is because they’ve created 37 big scoring chances, which is huge heading into a meeting against a Real Betis defense that has allowed the fifth-most big scoring chances in Spanish top flight.

Real Betis is a great offensive team as well. They’re third in NPxG and second in shots per 90 minutes. However, in six matches versus the top seven teams in Spain, they only created 4.3 xG in them. So, a lot of their impressive numbers have come versus clubs in the bottom half of the table.

The last time these sides met, Villarreal dominated in a 2-0 victory and held a 2.9-0.5 xG edge. Villarreal had 34 touches in the penalty area compared to only 20 for Real Betis, plus they had 50 progressive passes compared to only 24 for Real Betis, per fbref.com.

I have Villarreal projected as a +129 favorite, so I love the value on Villarreal via the Draw No Bet at +110 and would play it down to -110 odds.

Pick: Villarreal — Draw No Bet (+110)


Ligue 1 Projections  

Best Bets

Marseille vs. Angers

Marseille Odds -195
Angers Odds +500
Draw +340
Over/Under 2.5 (-105 / -115)
Day | Time Friday | 3 p.m. ET
How To Watch beIN SPORTS
Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute Soccer odds here.

This is not the best of spots for Marseille, who have been drastically over-performing the past two months. They lost to Lyon on Tuesday, which was their first Ligue 1 defeat in six matches. In those six games, they outscored their opponents, 7-3, but only had a +0.5 xGDiff in the process.

That’s nothing new for Marseille, who’s so overdue for negative regression on the defensive side. They’ve allowed only 17 goals on the season, but have conceded 25.2 xG, per fbref.com.

In fact, Marseille has conceded the ninth-most big scoring chances in the French top flight, but for some reason opponents just cannot put shots in the back of the net against them. Even goalkeeper Pau Lopez only has a +3.4 post-shot xG plus-minus, so it’s strange how teams cannot finish against them.

On the other side, Angers is your typical mid-table side. They have a solid defense only allowing 1.07 NPxG per match. They’re also top seven in shots allowed per 90 minutes, box entries conceded per 90 minutes and big scoring chances yielded. They typically play out of a 3-4-1-2 formation, which normally morphs into a 5-2-1-2, but that has been successful, as they have a +3.73 xGDiff in a little more than 1,000 minutes in it this season, per understat.com.

Welcome back from the international break, PSG! Angers scores on the counter to take a surprising lead in Paris, with Sofiane Boufal supplying a perfect cross

(via @ESbeINSPORTS) pic.twitter.com/y6yfvNvm41

— Planet Fútbol (@si_soccer) October 15, 2021

Angers offense is one of the worst in Ligue 1, but they will be getting one of their best players back in Sofaine Boufal, who was representing Morocco at the Africa Cup of Nations. His 0.62 xG plus xAssists per 90-minute rate will be a big boost going forward.

This is just not that great of a spot for Marseille, having to play on two days’ rest coming out of the international break without their second leading scorer — Bamba Dieng — who is still at AFCON with finalist Senegal.

I only have Marseille’s spread projected at -0.55, so I like the value on Angers +1 at -105 odds.

Pick: Angers +1 (-105)


Rennes vs. Brest

Rennes Odds -200
Brest Odds +550
Draw +350
Over/Under 2.5 (-125 / +105)
Day | Time Sunday | 11 a.m. ET
How To Watch beIN SPORTS CONNECT
Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute Soccer odds here.

Rennes is a really good offensive team, averaging 1.61 NPxG per match, which is the second-best mark in the league. They’re also racking up 15.05 shots per 90 minutes and have created 37 big scoring chances, both of which are top two in France. They should have no trouble creating chances against a Brest defense that’s 17th in NPxG allowed and yielding 1.71 xG per match against the top half of the table.

Additionally, Romain Faivre was sold to Lyon on deadline day. He was one of Brest’s best players and a huge part of their offense, scoring seven goals and dishing out five assists, while also putting up a 0.48 xG plus xAssist rate, which was the third-best mark on the team.

Offensively, Brest doesn’t create much from open play. Eleven of their 28 goals this season have either come off penalties or set pieces, plus they only average 0.88 xG per match from open play.

Defensively, Rennes is second in Ligue 1 in NPxG allowed and fantastic at defending set pieces, allowing only two goals from them on the season, which is the best mark in France.

Rennes is better at home than they are on the road, putting up a +10.3 xGDiff in only 11 matches, while Brest has a -6.7 xGDiff away from home this season.

I have Rennes’ spread projected at -1.47, so I like the value on their spread of -1 at -110 and would play it up to -125 odds.

Pick: Rennes -1 (-110)

How would you rate this article?