Real Madrid - Borussia Dortmund Betting Preview: Back an early goal at the Santiago Bernabeu

Our man in Madrid on Tuesday, Phil Kitromilides, believes that backing a strike before 22 minutes is an excellent option for the Champions League semi-final second leg
Ever since April 24's 4-1 win for Borussia Dortmund in the first leg of their Champions League semi-final, the Madrid-based sports papers have been alive with the talk of a comeback.

Indeed, one of the dailies went with the headline "Operation 3-0" the night after the calamity at Signal Iduna Park, highlighting the minimum scoreline which Real Madrid require to ensure progression.

The bookmakers make them red-hot favorites to win, with Bet365 pricing them at 4/6 (1.65).

The problem being, of course, that, given the scale of their collapse in Germany, Madrid not only need to win but win convincingly and even that might not be enough; as one Madridista put it: "how sad that even a 5-2 win sees us out".

Yet there is genuine hope here in the Spanish capital given Madrid's past comebacks in Europe against the likes of Inter, Anderlecht, and somewhat surprisingly, Derby County.

Dortmund, for their part, are offered at 4/1 (5.00) but Madrid have not lost a European game at home for two years and though BVB looked stunning in their own backyard, the Santiago Bernabeu might be a different prospect.

Goals look extremely likely and, as such, the prices for both teams to score, 4/9 (1.44), and over 2.5 goals, 4/11 (1.36), are far too short to consider.

Instead, back a goal to be scored inside the first 22 minutes, which is offered at the infinitely more appealing price of 5/6 (1.83).

Madrid will be desperate for an early strike to get themselves and the crowd believing in the possibility of a comeback and to also prey on Dortmund's relative recent inexperience at this level.

However, BVB have shown just how adept they are at counterattacking and, should Madrid come out all guns blazing, they could leave themselves exposed to a sucker punch.

This bet has paid out in each of Madrid's last three home games in the Champions League and should have a great chance of doing so again.

Furthermore, Bet365's excellent £50 free in play bet offer makes this option even more tempting; should there be no goal in the first 22 minutes, you can use your free bet to make up for it in the rest of the match.

For a value bet, try backing Madrid to win both halves at 11/4 (3.75), something that they surely must do if they are to have any hope of pulling off what would be the greatest European comeback in their long history.

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Goal before 22 minutes at 5/6 (1.83) with bet365
Real Madrid to win both halves at 11/4 (3.75) with bet365

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