The first Champions League semi-final takes place on Tuesday evening, with Germany up against France as RB Leipzig face Paris Saint-Germain.
Both teams won their quarter-finals by the same scoreline (2-1) but, not surprisingly considering their squad, PSG go into this clash as the strong favourites at
Julian Nagelsmann’s men have already caused a few surprises in this year’s competition though and are capable of producing another upset.
Stubborn Backline Gives Leipzig a Chance
Many felt Atletico Madrid would strangle the life out of Leipzig in the quarters, but even when they were pegged back, the Bundesliga side still had the character to claim the victory late in the game.
Nagelsmann’s side have kept three clean sheets in their last six Champions League games, with Dayot Upamecano the shining light in their solid back four.
The French Under-21 star has been strongly linked with a move to one of Europe’s big names this summer and reaching the European showpiece final will add millions to his price-tag.
Many feared that when Timo Werner completed his move to Chelsea, Leipzig’s hopes of Champions League success may have gone with him.
But the Leipzig 4-2-3-1 formation caused Atletico problems and could also frustrate PSG when the two sides meet in Lisbon – with the Germans available at
16/5 to claim victory.
With Werner gone, Yussuf Poulsen is being asked to play a long strike role and that has meant the goals are more likely to come from the players behind the Dane. Marcel Sabitzer scored twice in their 3-0 win over Tottenham and can be backed at
3/1 to score at anytime on Tuesday.
PSG Likely to Look to Mbappe
Many expected PSG to cruise through their quarter-final tie with Atalanta, but the Ligue 1 champions needed two goals in stoppage time to progress past the Italians.
All the pressure on Tuesday is on the French giants, with European success expected after several years of heavy financial investment.
Thomas Tuchel’s men are the first PSG side to reach the Champions League semi-finals since the 1994-95 campaign, when they were eventually eliminated over two legs by AC Milan.
Since their return to action in July, PSG have won both French Cups before beating Atalanta – conceding just one goal in those three games.
Defensively they have looked better, but Tuchel’s squad have not shown the attacking flair we’ve come to expect and that may lead to changes in their starting line-up.
After recovering from injury, Kylian Mbappe –
23/20 to score at anytime – featured as a second-half substitute in the quarters and the French star is likely to be included in the starting XI on Tuesday.
If the World Cup star is deemed fit enough to start, it is Pablo Sarabia who is expected to drop out – making a forward three of Mbappe, Neymar and Mauro Icardi.
Mbappe’s European record is incredible, with the 21-year-old having been directly involved in 10 goals in eight Champions League ties so far this season – scoring five times and claiming five assists.
The French striker has been involved in a Champions League goal on average every 48 minutes this season.
*All odds correct at time of writing