Besiktas and Sporting are kicking off the third round of the UEFA Champions League on Tuesday night at Vodafone Arena in Istanbul. The fantastic venue near the sea will host teams with two losses from the opening two matches of this UCL campaign. It is very important for either side to take three points and stay in the race for the knockout stage, or at least, secure the third place that leads to the UEFA Europa League elimination stage. Things aren’t looking good for the hosts, who are in problems due to injuries and poor results. Sporting, meanwhile, isn’t that bad but isn’t displaying some amazing football as well.
Besiktas (+230) is an underdog in this event, despite playing at home. And we all do know how big of an advantage that is for one Turkish team. The fans are absolutely wild, and the atmosphere is ferocious, which often helps the hosts to break the rival’s defiance.
The Eagles have several of their players out for this match, and overall, they have been struggling to provide consistency, particularly due to numerous injuries and absences. It is why Besiktas won only one of the past five games, losing three times during that span.
Efficiency is, however, one thing that is constant when Besiktas plays. Only one game in the past nine wasn’t with over 2.5 goals, and five in the last six were with both teams to score.
Sporting (+110) recovered following a narrow loss in Germany against Dortmund, winning two in a row in the domestic competitions. The first was against Arouca in Primeira, 1-2, and after that, they beat OS Belenenses 0-4.
Overall, apart from losing twice in the UCL, the Lions are without a defeat in the recent 10 games, and their record in the remaining 8 clashes is six wins and two draws, one of them against FC Porto in the big derby.
This team isn’t keen on participating in high-scoring affairs like their upcoming counterpart. The majority of Sporting’s games were with under 2.5 goals, and the same goes with both teams not scoring.
N’Koudou is out for this event, the same as Karaman, Mehmet Topal, and the experienced Miralem Pjanic. All are injured for various reasons.
Pedro Goncalves is doubtful for the hosts, and he is the only Lions player that probably won’t play on Tuesday night.
Head to Head Matches
In 2015, these teams played in the Europa League group stage. The first match in Istanbul saw a 1-1 draw, and the second in Lisbon witnessed hots’ confident win, 3-1.
Regardless of all the problems, Besiktas won’t change its style of play. The Eagles will be offensive and aggressive from the kick-off, and there is no chance to see a different approach. That will undoubtedly force Sporting to open at some point, and as a result, we expect to see lots of goals here, on both sides. The odds on both teams netting and over 2.5 scores are currently at +125, which is superb from our point of view. If you find that risky, go only with both teams scoring, at -125.
Pick: Both teams to score and over 2.5 goals +125
Here are the preview for more UEFA Champions League games:
- Atletico Madrid vs. Liverpool
- Ajax vs. Borussia Dortmund
- PSG vs. RB Leipzig
- Porto vs. AC Milan
- Benfica vs. Bayern Munich
- Barcelona vs. Dynamo Kyiv
Nikola Velickovic is a sports journalist who loves to write and read on all sports. Nikola contributes both news updates and functions as a sports breaking news writer at WagerBop.