Manchester United 28/1
The fact that English football’s most successful club are rated as the least likely of the Premier League clubs to win this seasons Champions League tells you all you need to know about how far the Old Trafford outfit have fallen behind their rivals in recent years.
After a summer of discontent which has seen manager Jose Mourinho on a collision course with his clubs board, the media and several of his sides star players, it has been a difficult start to the season for the Red Devils, with the three-time European Cup winners losing two of their opening four fixtures in the league.
Despite being drawn in a tricky group with Juventus, Valencia and Young Boys, you would have to fancy United to qualify for the knockout stage with Mourinho’s tactical nous, although it is likely to be far from pretty. It is hard though to see United having the quality to trouble any of the top teams once it gets to the business end of the tournament.
Tottenham Hotspur 20/1
Spurs are now becoming regulars at Europe’s top table having qualified for the Champions League for three successive seasons under highly-rated coach Mauricio Pochettino. Premier League fans have known for a while now that the North London outfit can beat anybody on their day, but that knowledge has now spread across Europe’s top clubs after Spurs demolished eventual Champions Real Madrid and German powerhouses Borussia Dortmund in the group stages last year.
After their exploits last season, a group containing Barcelona, Inter Milan, and PSV Eindhoven will hold no fear for Pochettino’s men and although it would be fanciful to suggest Harry Kane and company will win Europe’s biggest prize they will more than likely take a big scalp or two before their elimination.
Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool lit up last year’s tournament with some electric attacking football that saw the Anfield outfit unexpectedly reach the final in Kiev last May. Although they would ultimately lose 3-1 to Real Madrid at the final hurdle, Klopp’s side will be full of confidence that after a summer of excellent recruitment they can make a serious impact on the Champions League for the second year in a row.
With Dutch defender Virgil Van Dijk and Brazilian ‘keeper Alisson having shored things up at the back for Liverpool, and with their frightening front three of Mo Salah, Bobby Firmino and Sadio Mane – who scored over 30 goals in last years competition – no club in Europe will want to face the Reds.
Klopp’s men have been drawn in a group with PSG, Napoli and Red Star Belgrade. Although it is far from easy, Liverpool have enough with the quality of their squad and the magic of European nights at Anfield to go deep into Europe’s most prestigious tournament again this year.
Manchester City 6/1
Not only did Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City win the Premier League in record-breaking fashion last season they did so while playing some of the most spectacular attacking football English football has ever seen. Had it not been for the Citizens coming up against an on form Liverpool side at the quarter-final stage last year Guardiola’s side may well have had a real shot at being crowned Champions of Europe last season.
City are not just the favourites amongst the Premier League clubs, but they are the overall favourites to lift the Champions League in Madrid next May. It may seem a little strange that a club who has never made it beyond the semi-final stage is the favourite, but that is just a testament to how highly Guardiola’s side are rated and with European powerhouses like Barcelona, Real Madrid and Bayern Munich arguably weaker than they have been in the past this may well be the first season since Chelsea in 2012 when an English club is crowned Champion of Europe.
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