A winning double for Chris Graham (@chrisgraham79) on Tuesday’s Champions League, more winners please!
BATE Borisov v Dundalk | Wednesday 18:30
Not much choice on Wednesday to be honest. Five games in total in the Champions League 2nd Qualifying Round and I’ve already covered Celtic elsewhere, only one other game stands out.
The very experienced BATE Borisov host the very green Dundalk and look a handsome price in my eyes. 4/9 is certainly not a working man’s price but I can find other ways of getting involved with them. Let me explain why I like them…
BATE have dominated Belarussian football since it’s inception two decades ago. They’ve won the last nine titles and have built up a bank of European experience on the back of that.
Whipping boys back in the day, over the last seven years or so they’ve developed into a very reasonable, competitive outfit. Four times since 2008 (and in three of the last four years) they’ve reached the Champions League group stages and amongst those games you’ll find draws with Juventus, AC Milan, wins over Lille, Athletic Bilbao and (wait for it………………………) Bayern Munich! Last season’s campaign was very disappointing with five defeats out of six, but for me this team is on a different level from Dundalk.
The Irish side won their first title in 19 years last year and they have nothing like the profile that BATE have. Last year’s sojourn in the Europa League was fairly decent to be fair, they beat Luxembourg outfit Jeunesse Esch home and away and then won in Croatia against Hadjuk Split but still went out.
Hats off to them for those performances but BATE’s results are a step up from that level of form. As stated earlier, the Belarussians are 4/9 to win but I’ll back them -1 at 6/5 with Bet365. Borisov won their last two home UCL qualifiers by more than one goal and I really feel Dundalk may be out their depth here.
BATE Borisov v Dundalk – BATE Borisov -1 (6/5 Bet365)