Best Betting Picks for Champions League Action on Tuesday, October 19

| October 18, 2021 9:56 am PDT

The Champions League returns this week with Round 3. The first eight games are on the program on Tuesday and I’m now going to do a betting preview for a couple of those.

I will also provide my betting picks for all the games, as well as reveal what I’m planning to put my money on this Tuesday. Let’s start with my banker of the day, which is PSG.

PSG to Beat Leipzig

Last year, these two met three times in the Champions League. Their first meeting was in the semifinal of the 2019-20 tournament. PSG won that game 3-0. Then, in the 2020-21 season, they played two times in the group stage, with each team getting a win on its turf.

Almost a year later, PSG and Leipzig meet again. Once again, they’re meeting in the group, where the French team is at the top of the table. Ahead of Round 3, the German team is at the very bottom.

It seems very likely that their positions will not change this Tuesday. I’m confident PSG will cause another defeat to Leipzig.

The reason?

First of all, the French champion’s roster is several times more valuable than the one of Leipzig. According to Transfermarkt, the total value of PSG’s players is nearly $1.15 billion; the value of Leipzig’s squad is about two times lower.

Leipzig’s most valuable player is Dani Olmo, with an estimated worth of $58 million. Unfortunately, the Spanish international is injured and will not play against PSG. In his absence, Leipzig’s most valuable player is Christopher Nkunku with a value of $54.5 million.

What’s interesting is that there are seven players on the PSG roster who are worth more than that, namely:

  • Kylian Mbappe ($185 million)
  • Neymar ($115 million)
  • Lionel Messi ($92.5 million)
  • Marquinhos ($87 million)
  • Achraf Hakimi ($81 million)
  • Gianluigi Donnarumma ($75 million)
  • Marco Veratti ($54 million)

Still, the price tag doesn’t always tell the whole story. Some players are just much better than what their estimated value suggests. One such player will play a key role in Tuesday’s game.

Unfortunately for Leipzig, I’m not talking about their players. Whom I’m talking about is Lionel Messi.

Even though he’s widely considered to be the soccer GOAT, Messi is only the third-most valuable player on PSG’s roster.

The 34-year-old Argentine has been sensational this year and is now the main favorite to win the FIFA Ballon d’Or (Golden Ball) award. The odds on Messi are as short as 1.44 at some soccer sportsbooks.

To make sure he wins his seventh Ballon d’Or, Messi just needs to continue playing well.

In the previous round of the Champions League, he scored one of the two PSG goals against Manchester City. With a goal or two against Leipzig, he’d make another giant leap toward the prize.

And with Messi playing at his best, PSG has nothing to worry about the outcome of the game.

Dortmund to Beat Ajax

Erling Haaland is back! What that means is that Ajax’s defense is in trouble.

The 21-year-old Norwegian striker is thought to be one of the future superstars of the game. Actually, knowing how awesome he’s been for Dortmund, he’s already reached that status.

The Terminator, as the Dortmund faithful call him, is this team’s best player, as well as one of the most prolific scorers on the continent. The guy’s scored 13 goals in nine games this season in all competitions.

Of those 13 goals, just one happened in the Champions League. However, there’s an explanation behind such a low number of goals – Haaland has played only one game in the competition this season.

His second Champions League game is the one against Ajax in Amsterdam. He is arriving in the Dutch capital after scoring two goals in the Bundesliga last weekend in what was his first game after a muscle injury.

Haaland might be their best player, but Dortmund isn’t a one-man army. These guys showed it in the previous Champions League game, in which they beat Sporting 1-0.

Sure, Ajax is a much tougher opponent, especially when playing at Johan Cruijff Arena, but with Haaland back in the team, Dortmund looks destined to win.

Atletico Madrid and Liverpool to Draw

Liverpool is without a defeat in competitive matches since early April. That’s when the Reds lost 3-1 to Real Madrid.

They’re back in the Spanish capital, but this time their opponent isn’t Real. Instead, they’re squaring off against the reigning La Liga champion, Atletico.

This definitely isn’t great news for Liverpool as Atletico seems to play a style of soccer that doesn’t suit the Reds.

The thing is that the Spanish champ is arguable the best defensive team in the world. It’s very difficult to outsmart players like Jose Gimenez, Renan Lodi, Mario Hermoso, and other Atletico defenders.

Then, there’s their goalie Jan Oblak, who’s widely considered to be one of the planet’s finest shot-stoppers.

Atletico’s Jan Oblak was given the highest rating among goalkeepers by Electronic Arts in FIFA 22. The Slovene goalie has a 91 rating. In comparison, Liverpool’s stopper Alisson has an 89 rating.

Knowing all this, one has to assume that Liverpool is not going to be able to score too many goals on Tuesday; but what about Atletico? Can this team put a few away?

They might, but not too many. The thing is that this team just doesn’t score too many goals. It’s not because they can’t; it’s because their coach Simeone wants them to be cautious.

That said, I’m sure we’re not going to see Atleti charging toward Liverpool’s net. Instead, we’ll probably see a real war in the midfield.

In my experience, midfield battles usually finish without a winner.

Picks for Other Champions League Games on Tuesday

  • Manchester City to Beat Club Brugge
  • Besiktas to Beat Sporting
  • FC Porto to beat AC Milan
  • Inter to beat Sheriff Tiraspol
  • Real Madrid to beat Shakhtar Donetsk

The reason I didn’t analyze these five picks in detail is that they’re either risky or come with short odds.

Manchester City, Inter, and Real Madrid are the picks that belong to the first category. These bets will probably win but you’re not going to win much money if they do.

When it comes to Besiktas and FC Porto, although I do feel as they might win, I wouldn’t advise putting too much money on these bets.

Best Champions League Bets for Tuesday

PSG to Beat Leipzig1.46
Dortmund vs. Ajax Over 2.5 Goals1.50
Atletico Madrid vs. Liverpool Under 2.5 Goals1.80

PSG is my banker of the day – I can’t see any other outcome in this game. Unfortunately, oddsmakers agree with me, which is why the odds aren’t that great.

However, I might have a solution for that. If you’re going to bet at MyBookie, there’s an interesting wager at your disposal – Lionel Messi to score anytime.

The sportsbook is giving 2.05 on this scenario to play out, which is a fantastic value in my opinion.

When it comes to the other two games, I think it’s best to focus on goals. In the clash between Ajax and Dortmund, we’ll probably see plenty of them.

In the Atletico Madrid vs. Liverpool clash, I don’t think we’ll witness a lot of goals. My pick is two goals tops.

Zarko Naric

Zarko Naric – the World's Greatest Sportswriter, according to his grandma.

Zarko started writing for in 2019, covering sports like soccer, tennis, and basketball,  as well as some more niche sports like cycling, for example.

In addition to writing news, picks, and blog pieces focused on sports, Zarko’s also been covering politics, TV/music contests, and so on.

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