Who are the favorites for UEFA Champions League Glory?

UEFA Champions League

The UEFA Champions League has just started again and there has already been a massive shock, with Lazio steal a 1-0 victory at home against Bayern Munich thanks to a late penalty from captain Ciro Immobile. The traveling Bavarians were heavily favored in their trip to the Stadio Olimpico. However, they struggled to break down the resolute Italians and England captain Harry Kane was starved of service. As a result, his side have a deficit to overturn in the second leg at the Allianz Arena, as well as a five-point deficit to league leaders Bayer Leverkusen in the Bundesliga.

Despite their defeat, Bayern Munich are still one of the favorites for glory. But which other sides are considered frontrunners?

the city of Manchester

Manchester City have not only risen through the ranks of English and European football since their money-spinning Abu Dhabi-backed takeover in 2008, but under Pep Guardiola they have redefined the modern game with their brand of fast-flowing, possession-based football. The Midas touch team in the Premier League has resulted in serial domestic titles, but it was the elusive Champions League that the club's owners sought more than anything else. That finally came last season at the 12th time of asking courtesy of Rodri's second-half winner against Inter Milan in Istanbul.

this season, Bovada sports book has made them the overwhelming favorites to retain the famous 'Big-Eared' trophy, pricing them at +170. Their formidable midfield, featuring the likes of Kevin De Bruyne and Phil Foden, is a creative force capable of dictating the tempo of any game. Add to that the sheer firepower of striking sensation Erling Haaland and it's clear to see why City are once again very much fancied.

Real Madrid

Record 15-time champions Real Madrid have the pedigree to turn the tide in their favor in every football game. Under the management of Carlo Ancelotti, Los Blancos claimed the title back in 2022 with a 1-0 victory against Liverpool in Paris. They are expected to once again mount a daunting challenge, with a mix of experience and youthful conviction.

The midfield trio of Luka Modric, Toni Kroos and Federico Valverde was already a harmonious engine room capable of orchestrating the most complex attacks. The addition of English sensation Jude Bellingham has transformed the club from the Spanish capital into a powerhouse. The former Borussia Dortmund man has been the star of the show at the Bernabeu this term, scoring a mighty 20 goals in all competitions, as well as providing a further eight assists in just 29 appearances.

Don Carlo's men were perhaps the most impressive team in the group stage, winning all six matches, including victories at home and away against Italian champions Napoli. That will leave Real Madrid with the impression that they can beat anyone on the continent, and they will need to do just that if they are to claim the title again this term. They already hold a 1-0 lead over RB Leipzig and look dead set on reaching another quarter-final. If their starboy Bellingham can continue in a similar fashion, Los Blancos will certainly be a problem in the latter stages of the tournament.


Arsenal's revival under Mikel Arteta has injected a new sense of optimism into the Gunners faithful. Last season they pushed Manchester City all the way into the Premier League title race, top of the pile for much of the campaign, only to falter at the final hurdle. This season they are domestic contenders again, just two points behind league leaders Liverpool. Hoping to build on a first English top-flight crown in two decades.

Many feel The Gunners may be better suited to the ebb and flow of knockout football rather than a protracted title race, and that is exactly what they will find in the Champions League. Arsenal next have a Round of 16 clash against FC Porto, a two-legged tie which they will be heavy favorites to win. Their solid defense is led by Brazilian Gabriel Magalhães and Frenchman William Saliba, two men who very rarely let goalscoring opportunities come to fruition.

Up top, Arsenal have one of the most feared front lines in all of Europe in the form of Gabriel Martinelli, Gabriel Jesus, and Bukayo Saka. Add to that the experience of two former Chelsea stars, namely Kai Havertz and Jorginho, and perhaps the finest defensive midfielder in the world in Declan Rice, and it's easy to see why the North London club are more than a match for one of Europe's finest on their day. They have won their last two Premier League games by a combined score of 11-0, beating West Ham 6-0 and Burnley 5-0, both away from home. If they continue in a similar vein, they may end up with more than one trophy in their cabinet this year.

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