The Champions League was back with a bang last week and we saw some fantastic games, with some stellar performances notably from Manchester City, Barcelona, Borussia Dortmund, Ajax, Sporting Lisbon, Real Madrid and Napoli.

On the flip side, there’s going to be plenty of concern at a number of teams including British sides Celtic, Rangers, Liverpool and Chelsea, all of whom suffered opening matchday defeats, additionally the likes of Inter Milan, FC Porto, Bayer Leverkusen, Sevilla and Red Bull Leipzig will certainly be feeling the pressure after they too suffered a loss.

For me, the stellar performance of the week came in Germany where Shakhtar Donetsk, who are having to play their home games in Poland, secured a stunning and unexpected 4-1 win over Red Bull Leipzig to take them top of the group ahead of Real Madrid on goals score.

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There’s lots to get through this week, so without any further ado, here’s our recap of the action in each group, together with a preview and tips for the games to be played on this week’s Matchday 2 action.

Champions League Group Stage Tables & Results

Group A

Matchday 1

  • Ajax Amsterdam 4-0 Rangers (Alvarez 17, Berghuis 32, Kudus 33, Bergwijn 80)
  • Napoli 4-1 Liverpool (Zielinski 5(p), 47, Anguissa 31, Simeone 44), (Diaz 49)

Table

  1. Ajax – 3pts (+4)
  2. Napoli – 3pts (+3)
  3. Liverpool – 0pts (-3)
  4. Rangers – 0pts (-4)

Matchday 2 Fixtures

  • Liverpool v Ajax Amsterdam (8pm – Tue)
  • Rangers v Napoli (8pm – Wed)

Our Tips

  • Liverpool v Ajax – Dusan Tadic to score anytime (12/5)
  • Rangers v Napoli – Napoli to win and both teams to score (5/2)

Napoli look the real deal in Group A after that big win over Liverpool and I am not convinced that the Reds struggles are over, especially against a talented Ajax side. I fancy both sides that won last week to pick up something from their games.

Group B

Matchday 1

  • Atletico Madrid 2-1 FC Porto (Hermoso 90+1, Griezmann 90+11), (Uribe 90+6(p))
  • Club Brugge 1-0 Bayer Leverkusen (Sylla 42)

Table

  1. Atletico Madrid – 3pts (+1)
  2. Club Brugge – 3pts (+1)
  3. FC Porto – 0pts (-1)
  4. Bayer Leverkusen – 0pts (-1)

Matchday 2 Fixtures

  • Bayer Leverkusen v Atletico Madrid (8pm – Tue)
  • FC Porto v Club Brugge (8pm – Tue)

Our Tips

  • Bayer Lev v At.Madrid – Atletico Madrid to win (6/4)
  • FC Porto v Cl.Brugge – Porto to win to nil (11/8)

Atletico Madrid left it very late to beat FC Porto, with all 3 goals coming in injury time in that game and the Spaniards should feel good about taking on an out of sorts Leverkusen side on Tuesday. Porto will be looking to bounce back from that loss to Atletico and they should win this one.

Group C

Matchday 1

  • Barcelona 5-1 Viktoria Plzen (Kessie 13, Lewandowski 34,45+3,67, Torres 71), (Sykora 44)
  • Inter Milan 0-2 Bayern Munich (Sane 25, D’Ambrosio (OG) 66)

Table

  • Barcelona – 3pts (+4)
  • Bayern Munich – 3pts (+2)
  • Inter Milan – 0pts (-2)
  • Viktoria Plzen – 0pts (-4)

Matchday 2 Fixtures

  • Viktoria Plzen v Inter (5.45pm – Tue)
  • Bayern Munich v Barcelona (8pm – Tue)

Our Tips

  • Viktoria Plzen v Inter – Inter to win and both teams to score (21/10)
  • Bayern Munich v Barcelona – Bet Boost – Sadio Mane Over 0.5 Shots, Bayern to win, Over 8 Corners Combined (9/2)

Inter know they need a big result here to get back into contention in this group and while it will be close, I am expecting them to land the win away from home. There’s a great Bet Boost option for the Bayern v Barca clash which looks great value to me.

Group D

Matchday 1

  • Eintracht Frankfurt 0-3 Sporting Lisbon (Edwards 65, Trincao 67, Santos 82)
  • Tottenham 2-0 Marseille (Richarlison 76,81)

Table

  • Sporting Lisbon -3pts (+3)
  • Tottenham Hotspurs – 3pts (+2)
  • Marseille – 0pts (-2)
  • Eintracht Frankfurt – 0pts (-3)

Matchday 2 Fixtures

  • Sporting Lisbon v Tottenham (5.45pm – Tue)
  • Marseille v Eintracht Frankfurt (8pm – Tue)

Our Tips

  • Sporting v Tottenham  – Tottenham to win to nil (5/2)
  • Marseille v E.Frankfurt – Dmitri Payet to score anytime (12/5)

Sporting Lisbon’s home record is nowhere near as good as their away record in Europe and if Spurs can keep it tight, I think they may sneak a win here. Marseille need a win and at home they have the deadball specialist Payet on hand and I think he will have a big say in how this game goes.

Group E

Matchday 1

  • Dinamo Zagreb 1-0 Chelsea (Orsic 13)
  • Red Bull Salzburg 1-1 AC Milan (Okafor 28), (Saelemaekers 40)

Table

  • Dinamo Zagreb – 3pts (+1)
  • AC Milan – 1pt (0)
  • Red Bull Salzburg – 1pt (0)
  • Chelsea – 0pts (-1)

Matchday 2 Fixtures

  • AC Milan v Dinamo Zagreb (5.45pm – Wed)
  • Chelsea v Red Bull Salzburg (8pm – Wed)

Our Tips

  • AC Milan v Dinamo Zagreb – Rafael Leao to score first (4/1)
  • Chelsea v Salzburg – Chelsea to win 2-1 (8/1)

AC Milan will know that to capitalise on that point in Salzburg a win is needed here against the surprise group leaders. Chelsea under new boss Graham Potter will be keen to kick start their campaign with a win and I think they will eke out a nervy victory here by a 2-1 scoreline.

Group F

Matchday 1

  • Celtic 0-3 Real Madrid (Vinicius Jr 56, Modric 60, Hazard 77)
  • Red Bull Leipzig 1-4 Shakhtar Donetsk (Simakan 57), (Shved 15,58, Mudryk 76, Traore 85)

Table

  • Shakhtar Donetsk -3pts (+3)
  • Real Madrid – 3pts (+3)
  • Red Bull Leipzig – 0pts (-3)
  • Celtic – 0pts (-3)

Matchday 2 Fixtures

  • Shakhtar Donetsk v Celtic (5.45pm – Wed)
  • Real Madrid v Red Bull Leipzig (8pm – Wed)

Our Tips

  • S.Donetsk v Celtic – S.Donetsk to win and both teams to score (9/2)
  • R.Madrid v RB Leipzig – Vinicius Jr to score anytime (11/10)

This looks like being another tough night for Celtic here and while I feel thety may score a goal, I am backing Donetsk to come through and land the win in Poland. Real started very well against Celtic and I’d expect them to run up a similar score here and with Benzema out, Vini Jr is the man to back to score at any time in the game.

Group G

Matchday 1

  • Borussia Dortmund 3-0 Copenhagen (Reus 35, Guerriero 42, Bellingham 83)
  • Sevilla 0-4 Manchester City (Haaland 20,67, Foden 58, Ruben Dias 90+2)

Table

  • Manchester City – 3pts (+4)
  • Borussia Dortmund – 3pts (+3)
  • FC Copenhagen – 0pts (-3)
  • Sevilla – 0pts (-4)

Matchday 2 Fixtures

  • Copenhagen v Sevilla (8pm – Wed)
  • Manchester City v Borussia Dortmund (8pm – Wed)

Our Tips

  • Copenhagen v Sevilla – Draw (5/2)
  • Man City v B.Dortmund – Erling Haaland to score first (11/5)

The two defeated teams meet in what promises to be an important game if they are to stay in contention in this group but I feel a draw is the most likely outcome. City against Dortmund should be a cracker and you just know Erling Haaland is going to be fired up to put one over on his old team.

Group H

Matchday 1

  • Benfica 2-0 Maccabi Haifa (Silva 49, Grimaldo 54)
  • Paris St Germain 2-1 Juventus (Mbappe 5,22), (McKennie 53)

Table

  • Benfica – 3pts (+2)
  • Paris St Germain – 3pts (+1)
  • Juventus – 0pts (-1)
  • Maccabi Haifa -0pts (-2)

Matchday 2 Fixtures

  • Juventus v Benfica (8pm – Wed)
  • Maccabi Haifa v Paris St Germain (8pm – Wed)

Our Tips

  • Juventus v Benfica – Juventus to win (6/5)
  • M.Haifa v PSG – Neymar to score first (15/4)

I was very surprised to see Juventus better than even money to win a Champions League home game, so I think that picked itself. PSG should land a comfortable win in Israel and I feel it is time for Neymar to find the net first for the French side.