Betting tips for second leg of UEFA Champions League semifinals

The end results of last week’s first legs were roughly according to form, with both English clubs winning, though Manchester City and Liverpool took different paths to victory.

Now both clubs travel to Spain with a lead in the semifinals, seeking the second straight all-English Champions League final, May 28 in Paris.

As always, remember that these bets are for regulation only, since extra time will be played if the aggregate score is tied after 90 minutes. Here are my best bets for this week’s second legs.

Odds courtesy of Caesars Sportsbook.


Villarreal vs. Liverpool (Liverpool won 1st Leg 2-0)
3 p.m. ET

Pick: Under 2.5 goals (+115)

Liverpool dominated the first leg, holding 73% possession and outshooting Villarreal 19-1. With a season-low 43 touches in the attacking third, Villarreal didn’t create any of the counterattacking opportunities that worked so well against Juventus and Bayern Munich.

Now to even reach extra time, Villarreal needs a two-goal win, not an easy task against a Liverpool attack that has been shut out four times in 56 games this season, and versus a Liverpool defense that has allowed multiple goals once in this knockout stage. That one time was when Liverpool had a two-goal cushion and started a backup-filled backline at home against Benfica. Liverpool won’t do that on the road Tuesday, and I expect the game to look more like Liverpool’s second leg against Inter Milan, when the Reds had a two-goal lead and took 12 shots, their third fewest in a UCL game this season.

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