MANCHESTER United begin their Champions League campaign against Belgian side Club Brugge. Chris Graham (@chrisgraham79) takes a look at the odds.
Manchester United v Club Brugge | Tuesday 19:45 | BT Sport Europe
Two wins out of two for Manchester United this season so far, but were either that convincing? Their opening day win over Tottenham was procured by registering just one shot on target, and then six days later another 1-0 win was achieved against Aston Villa. This time they managed a mere two shots on target. So would you want to back them at 2/5 in this match?
Watching the BBC video preview of this match Mark Lawrenson was incredibly disparaging about Club Brugge. But while Manchester United were without European football last season, Lawrenson will no doubt be unaware that the Belgians were going deep in the Europa League.
Michel Preud’homme’s side got all the way to the quarter-finals of Europe’s secondary competition last season. Their journey included finishing top of a group involving Torino, FC Copenhagen and HJK Helsink while they managed home and away victories over Slaven Bilic’s Besiktas in the last 16.
Dnipro (eventual runners-up) were the side that eliminated Brugge from the competition but it was a close encounter with just one goal separating the sides over the two legs.
Domestically too Brugge had an excellent 2014/15. They won the regular season before finishing second in the season-climaxing play-off group. On top of that they won the Belgian Cup to crown an excellent campaign. Lawrenson reckons they’ll be a pushover though. I beg to differ.
Brugge were mean last season defensively. They conceded just two goals in their Europa League group (no other side conceded fewer) and had the joint best defensive record in the Belgian regular season.
So with Manchester United not really clicking yet and Brugge looking fairly solid I’m expecting a close contest. 6/5 on Under 2.5 Goals is an attractive price. I’ll also have small interests in the 1-0 and No Goalscorer picks to boot. The latter scoreline would certainly shock Mark Lawrenson!
Man Utd v Club Brugge – Under 2.5 Goals (6/5 Sportingbet)
Man Utd v Club Brugge – Man Utd to win 1-0 (13/2 William Hill)
Man Utd v Club Brugge – No Goalscorer (15/1 BetVictor)
Yes, that’s what Betfair will give you if you join before kick off.