UEFA Champions League predictions, odds, Wednesday picks, schedule: Will Chelsea bounce back vs. Juventus? – CBS Sports - Techy Hunters

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Wednesday, September 29, 2021

UEFA Champions League predictions, odds, Wednesday picks, schedule: Will Chelsea bounce back vs. Juventus? – CBS Sports

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The second half of Matchday 2 in the UEFA Champions League is set for Wednesday as eight more games take center stage under the lights on a European night. The slate is led by the Juventus vs. Chelsea clash in Northern Italy, while Barcelona hope to rebound from their crushing loss to Bayern Munich in their opener. As always, two games are in the early slate at 12:45 p.m. ET while six more follow at 3 p.m. ET. Watch each and every game live on Paramount+

So, who is going to win these matches? Our CBS Sports soccer experts have you covered with our predictions below:

Craving even more coverage of the world’s game? Listen below and subscribe to ¡Qué Golazo! A Daily CBS Soccer Podcast where we take you beyond the pitch and around the globe for commentary, previews, recaps and more.   

Atalanta vs. Young Boys

Time: Wednesday, 12:45 p.m. ET (Paramount+)

Latest Odds: Atalanta -1.5

Thomas Rongen: A constantly improving Atalanta continue their campaign with clash vs Young Boys, who stunned Manchester United in their opening fixture but given their poor record on the road in the competition, the Italians should have the upper hand. Pick: Atalanta 3, Young Boys 1

Fabrizio Romano: It is not an easy moment for Atalanta, but the attacking force is what will lead to an impact. Pick: Atalanta 1, Young Boys 0

Luis Miguel Echegaray: Atalanta just came off one of the most entertaining games of the season against Inter Milan and it ended as a draw so i think they’ll want to figure things out here, especially since they also drew another exciting match against Villarreal. They’ll be goals here. Mainly from the home side. Pick: Atalanta 3, Young Boys 1

Jonathan Johnson: The Italians are looking meaner in defense but less prolific in attack and I see them grinding this one out. Pick: Atalanta 1, Young Boys 0

James Benge: This could be one of the most stupidly fun games of the group stage. Two teams that attack with abandon and abandon their defensive duties, expect goals and mistakes in abundance. Pick: Atalanta 3, Young Boys 2

Roger Gonzalez: That Atalanta attack has yet to take off. It happens here with a monsterous performance.  Pick: Atalanta 4, Young Boys 0

Mike L. Goodman: It’s been a weird season so far for Atalanta with only eight goals insix matches in Serie A. Young Boys offer the team, which is coming off a thrilling 2-2 draw against Inter Milan, a chance to get back to their scoring ways. Pick: Atalanta 3, Young Boys 0

Zenit vs. Malmo

Time: Wednesday, 12:45 p.m. ET (Paramount+)

Latest Odds: Zenit -0.5

Thomas Rongen: Malmo have a poor record in the group stage of the competition and given Zenit’s solid home form, the Russians will be confident of claiming all three points. Pick: Zenit 2, Malmo 0

Fabrizio Romano: Very complicated game, it can end with a victory with few goals. Pick: Zenit 1, Malmo 0

Luis Miguel Echegaray: I want to be biased here because Peruvian Sergio Peña returns for Malmo and he could be another factor in their midfield against Zenit. Malmo will look to rectify the 3-0 loss to Juventus with a more professional display away from home. Pick: Zenit 0, Malmo 1

Jonathan Johnson: I hope to be proven wrong, but I fear this one could be a fairly dour affair. Pick: Zenit 0, Malmo 0

James Benge: It’s the one we’ve all been waiting for! To their credit Zenit gave Chelsea a tough time at Stamford Bridge last time out and probably should have scored one. If they can get Malcom more involved in this contest they should win. Pick: Zenit 1, Malmo 0

Roger Gonzalez: If the Russian side doesn’t win this one, it should get the boot from the competition.  Pick: Zenit 2, Malmo 0

Mike L. Goodman: This isn’t going to be fun for anybody as these two sides are likely competing for third place and a Europa League spot. Pick: Zenit 1, Malmo 0

Wolfsburg vs. Sevilla

Time: Wednesday, 3 p.m. ET (Paramount+)  

Latest Odds: Sevilla -0.5

Thomas Rongen: It’s third in Germany vs. third in Spain. Sevilla look a classy lot this season and should have enough about them to get the win in Germany. They’ve only failed to score once this season and will be keen to amend for that opening round dropped points. Pick: Wolfsburg 1, Sevilla 2

Fabrizio Romano: The offensive quality, the speed of Julen Lopetegui’s men is the basis for this result.  Pick: Wolfsburg 1, Sevilla 3

Luis Miguel Echegaray: Sevilla are quietly taking care of business in the league and will look to win big against a Wolfsburg side who is also doing well domestically. This should be a fun game with plenty of action. Pick: Wolfsburg 2, Sevilla 3

Jonathan Johnson: The Spaniards to get the better of the Germans who are wobbling a little of late. Pick: Wolfsburg 1, Sevilla 2

James Benge: Wolfsburg are going to try to bore their way to the round of 16 but European football simply should not stand for it. Expect Sevilla to strike one in the eye for teams that like expressing themselves. Julen Lopetegui’s side might have looked wobbly in their Champions League opener but in Spain they are imperious. Pick: Wolfsburg 0, Sevilla 1

Roger Gonzalez: John Brooks misses out due to suspension, but the German side gets what ends up being a solid point at home. Pick: Wolfsburg 1, Sevilla 1

Mike L. Goodman: Good defenses, conservative attacks, and a draw which suits Sevilla more than Wolfsburg. Pick: Wolfsburg 0, Sevilla 0

Bayern Munich vs. Dynamo Kiev

Time: Wednesday, 3 p.m. ET (Paramount+

Latest Odds: Bayern Munich -2.5

Thomas Rongen: Kiev are hardly the easiest side to break down — as Benfica found out two weeks ago — but such a youthful backline may come unstuck against a rampant Bayern. Julian Nagelsmann’s side are sweeping aside everything in their path this season and have their eyes firmly on the continental prize. Pick: Bayern Munich 3, Dynamo Kiev 0

Fabrizio Romano: Impressive fitness and a different level of quality, Bayern are clearly favorites. Pick: Bayern Munich 5, Dynamo Kiev 0

Luis Miguel Echegaray: Bayern Munich at home? Who made Barcelona look like a semi-professional team? Undefeated? Yes, you know where I’m going here. Pick: Bayern Munich 3, Dynamo Kiev 0

Jonathan Johnson: I can see the German giants dishing out a major thumping here. Pick: Bayern Munich 4, Dynamo Kiev 0

James Benge: A really good football team playing really good football, Bayern have already reached that stage of their season where it is hard to know what interesting things there are to say about them. Leroy Sane’s good, that’s new… Pick: Bayern Munich 3, Dynamo Kiev 0

Roger Gonzalez: This should be over by halftime. If Bayern were able to do that to Barcelona, imagine what they can do here. Pick: Bayern Munich 4, Dynamo Kiev 0

Mike L. Goodman: There are questions about Bayern’s depth, but none about their top-line talent, and they should show that easily against Kiev.  Pick: Bayern Munich 5, Dynamo Kiev 0

Red Bull Salzburg vs. Lille

Time: Wednesday, 3 p.m. ET (Paramount+)    

Latest Odds: Salzburg -0.5

Thomas Rongen: Lille’s new manager Jocelyn Gourvennec is yet to endear himself to the Lille faithful and will come under increasing pressure if his side fails to win here, but they at least appear to have improved on the goalscoring front. However, Salzburg are equally impressive in the final third and could have easily come away with three points against Sevilla but for a lack of ruthlessness from 12 yards, expect a pulsating encounter to end with the hosts coming out on top. Pick: Red Bull Salzburg 3, Lille 2

Fabrizio Romano: With balance between these two teams, a draw is a possibility.  Pick: Red Bull Salzburg 1, Lille 1

Luis Miguel Echegaray: A massive game for both sides, especially in a group where everything is still for the taking. Lille were poor against Wolfsburg so this could be a tough outing against Salzburg, who fought hard against Sevilla and showed more guile. A well-earned home win. Pick: Red Bull Salzburg 2, Lille 1

Jonathan Johnson: The French champions really should have beaten Wolfsburg and while I do not think that they will lose here, two points from a possible six will feel an insufficient return unless they can sneak a win in Austria. Pick: Red Bull Salzburg 1, Lille 1

James Benge: Lille have started to turn things around in Ligue 1 but when you look at the talent both these sides have to offer it’s hard not to favor the Austrian champions. All that they need to prove is that they have the fortitude to turn good performances into three points. They did not do so against Sevilla but ought to this time out. Pick: Red Bull Salzburg 2, Lille 0

Roger Gonzalez: A little upset as Brenden Aaronson scores on the counter, seeing his stock further climb. Pick: Red Bull Salzburg 2, Lille 1

Mike L. Goodman: Salzburg continue to be feisty and Lille are a far cry from what they were last season.  Pick: Red Bull Salzburg 1, Lille 0

Juventus vs. Chelsea

Time: Wednesday, 3 p.m. ET (Paramount+)    

Latest Odds: Chelsea -0.5

Thomas Rongen: The European champions suffered a home defeat to Manchester City, their first defeat of the season. Juventus suffered through the first four games of Serie A without a win for but at least have recovered by consecutive 3-2 wins in their last two matches. Chelsea look a tad short here in a venue where it’s never going to be easy, even accounting for Juve in transition and their injuries. Pick: Juventus 1, Chelsea 1

Fabrizio Romano: European champions Chelsea will not have an easy time. This will be the most “tactical” match of the week. Pick: Juventus 1, Chelsea 1

Luis Miguel Echegaray: Key injuries for Juventus will not help Max Allegri, but hopefully he looked at the tape from this past weekend, seeing how Pep Guardiola finally defeated Thomas Tuchel. Still, this will be a cagey affair. One where picking out a winner is just too hard. Pick: Juventus 0, Chelsea 0

Jonathan Johnson: Massimiliano Allegri’s men have lost Paulo Dybala and Alvaro Morata in attack so their chances against Thomas Tuchel’s titleholders have taken a hit after the Blues’ loss to City over the weekend. Pick: Juventus 0, Chelsea 2

James Benge: If this game is decided in midfield then Juventus are done for. Frankly if it is decided anywhere else it’s hard to look too favorably on their prospects when they have no Paulo Dybala or Alvaro Morata in attack and have only kept one clean sheet all season (against Malmo). Pick: Juventus 0, Chelsea 2

Roger Gonzalez: This has a Chelsea win written all over it, but Federico Chiesa has different plans. Pick: Juventus 1, Chelsea 1

Mike L. Goodman: Juve’s nightmare season continues as they have to face one of the toughest defenses in Europe without both Paolo Dybala and Alvaro Morata. Pick: Juventus 0, Chelsea 1

Benfica vs. Barcelona

Time: Wednesday, 3 p.m. ET (Paramount+)    

Latest Odds: Barcelona -0.5

Thomas Rongen: Despite claiming three points at the weekend, Barcelona are far from full strength and are not without their morale problems either. One can only imagine what anything other than three points here would do for Koeman’s future in the hot seat, and an in-form Benfica will sense an opportunity at the fortress that is the Estadio da Luz and are more than capable of claiming a hard-earned point from this clash. Pick: Benfica 1, Barcelona 1

Fabrizio Romano: The reaction is fundamental for Ronald Koeman. Barca can make a statement by winning in Lisbon. Pick: Benfica 1, Barcelona 2

Luis Miguel Echegaray: Barcelona looked GREAT against Levante this weekend and the return of Ansu Fati, who scored two minutes after entering the pitch on Sunday, helps Ronald Koeman. Barcelona need to keep going here, if anything for the sanctity of their own reputation. Benfica, however, is not gonna be easy. They remain perfect in the league and will use the energy of their home crowd to make things difficult for the Catalan club. A draw is more likely.  Pick: Benfica 1, Barcelona 1

Jonathan Johnson: Barca will just about get the job done in Portugal after they finally found some form against Levante. Pick: Benfica 1, Barcelona 2

James Benge: Jorge Jesus’ Benfica side have looked extremely hard to score against in Europe and one suspects a 0-0 draw might suit Ronald Koeman, giving him time to tinker on his selection before welcoming the Portuguese side back to Barcelona for a second place shootout later in the group stages. Pick: Benfica 0, Barcelona 0

Roger Gonzalez: Barcelona are on their way to being eliminated from the group stage after stumbling yet again. Pick: Benfica 1, Barcelona 1

Mike L. Goodman: Barcelona are struggling, but with Ansu Fati back in the fold, there’s enough talent to turn this season into a decent one still. Pick: Benfica 1, Barcelona 2

Manchester United vs. Villarreal

Time: Wednesday, 3 p.m. ET (Paramount+)  

Latest Odds: Manchester United -1.5

Thomas Rongen: The pressure is beginning to build for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer as Man United fans expect their side to be performing at a much higher standard. The Red Devils should be the favorites as Solskjaer is crying out for a response from his players. However, they could be in for another difficult evening against a resilient Villarreal that have been hard to break down. Yet another draw between the two sides could be on the cards at Old Trafford. Pick: Manchester United 1, Villarreal 1

Fabrizio Romano: Delicate and difficult game. But Ronaldo and his teammates can win and recover in the group. Pick: Manchester United 3, Villarreal 1

Luis Miguel Echegaray: A repeat of last season’s Europa League final. Man United lost to Aston Villa at Old Trafford in dramatic fashion, while Villarreal earned a good draw against Real Madrid. United need a response, especially after losing to Young Boys on Matchday 1. I think they just about deliver. Pick: Manchester United 2, Villarreal 1

Jonathan Johnson: Unai Emery’s men to come away from Old Trafford with a draw as the pressure grows for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. Pick: Manchester United 1, Villarreal 1

James Benge: The thing with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s Manchester United is that they never quite go bad enough to teeter into full-blown crisis mode, they always find a way back from the brink. Considering that another loss to Unai Emery’s Europa League champions would bring with it serious questions over the manager one has to assume that a team driven more by narrative arc than any underlying footballing philosophy will conform to story type. Pick: Manchester United 2, Villarreal 1

Roger Gonzalez: Finally Manchester United get a quality victory, but it is only because of a silly penalty conceded by Unai Emery’s men. Pick: Manchester United 2, Villarreal 1

Mike L. Goodman: United struggle to create good chances but Villarreal will play extremely conservatively at Old Trafford under Unai Emery. United will have plenty of chances even if those chances won’t be good ones. One of them will find the back of the net. Pick: Manchester United 1, Villarreal 0


Thanks for checking us out, and good luck with your picks!



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