Before becoming a Sports Journalist for Free Super Tips, Aaron spent three years studying Sports Journalism at the University of Sunderland while taking in the Black Cats' 'glory years' under Martin O'Neill. Now back in Northern Ireland he turns niche stats into predictions for FST, while he's one of the few people on this island who is equally comfortable at Windsor Park and the Aviva.
The Champions League qualifiers are one of the most high-pressure parts of the season and they arrive before the season has begun across most major leagues. For sides like Spartak Moscow and Benfica, the windfall of simply making the group stage could alter the future of the club.
Benfica’s Champions League exit last season allowed Man City to snap up Ruben Dias. The star defender could have stayed in Lisbon, had they not needed to make up the revenue lost by an early Champions League exit.
While football feels like its just warming up again after the Euros, there are huge nights ahead in the Champions League this month. Wednesday’s meeting in Moscow is among them, which has promoted us to put together this 16/1 bet builder tip! Don’t forget to see what we’re backing in the other big European games over in our match predictions.
Spartak Moscow vs Benfica Bet Builder Tip
Spartak Moscow vs Benfica Bet Builder Selections
One key difference about this season’s Champions League is the removal of the away goals rule, which does take the pressure off the pair in this first leg slightly. The hosts can afford to get forward a little more, but that’s not going to stop Benfica trying to get forward.
Spartak have only failed to score in two of their last nine home fixtures, while both teams have scored in three of Benfica’s last five games. Given that, we like both teams to score as the first pick in our bet builder.
We slightly favour the visitors in this clash, with Benfica manager Jorge Jesus holding a slight edge over his opposite number. Rui Vitoria has lost 13 of the 21 meetings between the two managers and the strength of the Portuguese side should be enough to see them claim the victory, so a Benfica win looks like good value.
The visitors will be fired on by Pizzi, who has a fantastic European record for the Portuguese giants. The midfielder has scored in four of his last five European games, while he’s scored seven goals across his last eight European appearances. He’s only failed to score in four of his last 15 European games, so Pizzi to score anytime is a great boost to this bet builder.
Finally, Spartak are two games into the new Russian Premier League season and they’ve made a solid start with two games away from home. They’ve racked up 12 corners across those two games so far and with no risk of conceding an away goal they should get forward and earn set pieces opportunities in this clash. As a result, we’re wrapping up our bet builder with over 4.5 Spartak corners.
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