Betting round-up: Battle of the Bridge

The reigning champions and the Serie A winners are pitted together in the pick of Wednesday's matches, while Barcelona and Manchester United are also in action Indonesia   By PAUL GOUGH

It seems the punters are certain of one thing ahead of Wednesday's Champions League match between defending champions Chelsea and Juventus, and that is it will be a game of few goals.

Chelsea head into the eagerly awaited Group E clash at Stamford Bridge - as match day one in this year's competition wraps up with another eight games on Wednesday [Thursday morning Australian time] - as the $2.15 favourites at Luxbet, with the draw at $3.20 and Juventus at $3.40.

But while Luxbet's Andy Scott said Chelsea have the majority support from punters, he said most are expecting a low-scoring game, with the Blues to win 1-0 at $6.50 and a 1-1 draw at $6 by far the two most favoured options when it comes to correct-score betting.

Regardless of which side the punters are backing, however, nearly all are convinced the match will be low-scoring.

In fact, Luxbet's odds on there being less than three goals scored in the match are now down to just $1.67, [the shortest of any of the eight matches being played on Wednesday] with punters able to get $2.15 on there being at least three goals scored in the match.

Support for a low-scoring game at the Bridge comes despite both clubs' free-flowing starts to the season.

Chelsea and Juventus lead their respective domestic competitions - the English Premier League and Serie A - and several of their matches this season have already involved plenty of goals.

Juve's last two wins in Serie A have been by 4-1 at Udinese and 3-1 at Genoa.

And while Chelsea did play a 0-0 draw on Saturday against QPR, the Blues were involved in a six-goal thriller at Stamford Bridge earlier this season when they beat Reading 4-2, while they went down 4-1 to Spain's Atletico Madrid in the European Super Cup.

Back Barcelona, Bayern Munich and Manchester United to win at Luxbet
Chelsea and Juventus to draw in Group E at $3.20 at Luxbet

The favourites to win this year's competition in Barcelona - champions in 2006, '09 and '11 but beaten in the semi-finals by Chelsea in 2012 - also make their first appearance this season on Wednesday, and are prodigious favourites to win at home against Russian club Spartak Moscow.

Barcelona are the shortest-priced favourites of the night at $1.08, with the draw at $9.75 and Spartak at $23.

Fellow previous winners Manchester United are almost as short at $1.29 to win at home against Turkish club Galatasaray at $10.

Scottish club Celtic, appearing in the group stages for the first time in four years, are great value to win at home at $3.50 against Portuguese club Benfica at $2.08, while last season's runners-up Bayern Munich will start short favourites at home at $1.42 to beat Valencia at $7.25.

*Note prices subject to change


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