Sporting events of the week

By Martin Green10 February 2019
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Paul Pogba

Champions League

Europe’s premier competition resumes this week and there are four exciting clashes for fans to look forward to. In-form Man Utd host Ligue 1 giants PSG at Old Trafford in what promises to be a ferociously competitive game on Tuesday night. The Red Devils have won 10 of 11 games since Ole Gunnar Solskjaer took over as manager and key players like Paul Pogba, Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial are in superb form. PSG are without Neymar, but they still possess outrageous firepower in the form of Kylian Mbappe and Edinson Cavani. They had the luxury of resting players at the weekend and they will be up for this game. Both teams to score and over 2.5 goals looks good at 10/11 with William Hill in this one. Roma host Porto in the other game on Tuesday and that looks like a tough one to call. The following day sees Real Madrid travel to Ajax, and the odds on the Champions League holders look too good to ignore. They are 10/11 with Sky Bet, 10 Bet and Boyle Sports, and 23/25 with Marathon Bet, which looks great after they won 3-1 away at Atletico Madrid at the weekend. Tottenham will be without Harry Kane and Dele Alli for their game against Borussia Dortmund, but both teams to score still looks interesting at 8/13 with William Hill due to the way Dortmund play.

Europa League

Arsenal travel to eastern Europe to take on BATE Borisov on Thursday night and they should be able to gun down their opponents in that one. They are the second favourites to win this tournament and they are expected to make short work of the Belarusian side. Arsenal -1 Asian handicap looks tempting at 7/10 with Bet365. Tournament favourites Chelsea are also away as they take on Malmo on what is likely to be a very cold night. They should have far too much quality in attack for the Swedes and you can get 10/13 at Bet Victor on Chelsea -1.25 Asian handicap.

T20 Big Bash

Just four teams remain standing in Australia’s BBL and the semi-finals take place on Thursday morning and Friday morning (European time). The Hobart Hurricanes topped the ladder with 10 wins from 14, so they take on the fourth placed team, Melbourne Stars, who finished 7-7. The Hurricanes should win that one and they are 3/4 with 888 Sport and Unibet to pull it off. The following day sees Melbourne Renegades and Sydney Sixers lock horns after they finished the regular season with identical 8-6 records. The Renegades have home advantage, but the Sixers look an interesting outside bet at 21/20 with 888 Sport and Unibet to clinch victory. They beat the Renegades by 33 runs in their last meeting and that should give them confidence.

Premier League darts

There will be no love lost on Valentine’s Day as some fierce rivals clash in Night 2 of the Premier League darts campaign. The pick of the bunch sees last year’s runner-up, Michael Smith, take on he talented Peter Wright. World number one Michael van Gerwen should sweep Mensur Suljovic aside, while Gerwen Price can beat an underperforming Raymond van Barneveld. Former champion James Wade started the season in great form and if he can topple Rob Cross he will emerge as a genuine contender for glory this season.

Welsh Open snooker

Snooker’s finest stars will gather in Cardiff to battle it out for glory at the Welsh Open. Defending champion John Higgins is a 22/1 outsider with Marathon Bet, while Ronnie O’Sullivan is the 3/1 favourite with Paddy Power. But it is worth taking a look at second favourite Judd Trump, who thrashed O’Sullivan to claim the Masters title last month and then dazzled at the World Grand Prix over the weekend.

FA Cup

The minnows Newport have already vanquished Leicester and Middlesbrough and now they will aim for the greatest scalp of all as they host Premiership champions Man City at the weekend. But Pep Guardiola’s men beat Burton 9-0 in a recent Carabao Cup semi-final and then put five past Burnley three days later in the FA Cup fourth round, so they are likely to take Newport apart in similar fashion. Betway, Betfred and Sky Bet have 8/13 on Crystal Palace to beat lowly Doncaster, which looks like a great price, while Wolves are 20/21 with Marathon to win away at Bristol City. That could make a great double.