Bayern Munich are well equipped to be the first team to defend the title since 1990, but our tipster thinks Pep Guardiola’s old foes could stand in their way
As the Champions League enters its knockout stages, Bayern Munich appear well placed to become the first team to retain the trophy since AC Milan in 1990.
Head and shoulders above all the rest in Europe last season, the holders look to have reached a new level under Pep Guardiola, who is available at 13/5 (3.60) with Paddy Power to win the title for a third time in his short managerial career.
The Spanish coach was unable to win back-to-back Champions Leagues during his time at Barcelona, and his former club pose one of the main threats to him lifting the trophy this season, at odds of 11/2 (6.50).
However, with the Blaugrana taking on Manchester City 11/1 (12.00) and Bayern facing Arsenal 25/1 (26.00) in the last 16, Real Madrid will certainly fancy their chances after a slightly easier-looking draw against Schalke 250/1 (251.00).
Like Guardiola, Carlo Ancelotti has two European titles to his name as a coach, and offers excellent value at 9/2 (5.50) to lead los Blancos to victory this season considering the wealth of talent at his disposal.
Jose Mourinho is another boss looking to make it a hat-trick of Champions League trophies and his Chelsea side are a real force to be reckoned with at 11/1 (12.00), particularly given their more modest last 16 opponents of Galatasaray 100/1 (101.00).
Paris Saint-Germain 12/1 (13.00) and Atletico Madrid 12/1 (13.00) may have been in impressive form this campaign but their lack of CL nous could count against them in the latter stages of the competition.
Meanwhile, Borussia Dortmund 16/1 (17.00) have struggled to rediscover the form that earned them runners-up medals last season and Manchester United 16/1 (17.00) look a shadow the team they were before Sir Alex Ferguson’s retirement.
Furthermore, with AC Milan 40/1 (41.00) in transition and Bayer Leverkusen 100/1 (101.00), Olympiakos 200/1 (201.00) and Zenit St Petersburg 200/1 (201.00) all considerable underdogs, Real Madrid could be the only realistic contender standing between Bayern and a second successive triumph.
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Al Hain-Cole is an experienced tipster and avid follower of European football. He specialises in accumulators and if you would like to read more from Al you can follow him on Twitter here.
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