With David Moyes' team well off the pace in the Premier League, the former Everton boss needs a strong European performance to silence the critics at Old TraffordThere will be more than just a place in the quarter finals at stake when Manchester United travel to Athens to take on Olympiakos in Tuesday’s Champions League clash.
With 11 points separating them from fourth place in the Premier League and just 11 games left to play, United are now 8/1 (9.00) to finish in a Champions League spot. David Moyes will know that his best hope of leading his side out in Europe’s elite competition next season may ride on winning the tournament this year.
|Man Utd Champions League Specials
|Odds from Paddy Power
|Man Utd to lose in the quarter finals||11/10|
|Man Utd to lose in the last 16||10/3|
|Man Utd to lose in the semi-finals||13/5|
|Man Utd to finish as runners-up||7/1|
|Man Utd to win the CL||20/1|
Nevertheless, a strong performance in this competition would certainly ease the pressure surrounding the Scot, starting with a two-legged victory over Olympiakos.
Having lost top scorer Kostas Mitroglou to Fulham in January, the Greek champions are not expected to pose too much of a threat, with odds of 10/3 (4.33) available on them knocking United out in embarrassing style.
While progress to the next stage is the least the fans expect, the Old Trafford faithful would certainly warm to Moyes should he upset the 11/10 (2.10) odds on them crashing out at the quarter finals stage by leading them into a the last four for the first time since 2011.
Alex Ferguson took the team all the way to the final that year, and his compatriot is available at 7/1 (8.00) to emulate that achievement by collecting a runners-up medal, with 13/5 (3.60) the price on him going home after the semi-finals.
Rafa Benitez made himself an instant fan favourite by orchestrating a shock Champions League win in his first Liverpool season back in 2005, but it is hard to realistically see Moyes doing the same considering the quality of opposition this year.
While victory over Olympiakos should allow the former Everton boss some breathing space, those odds of 11/10 (2.10) on a quarter final exit would look very generous indeed should his side draw the likes of Bayern Munich or Real Madrid in the next round, especially considering the results of the four last 16 ties so far, which have seen all of the favourites secure a first leg advantage.
|Manchester United to lose in the CL quarter finals for a 2pt stake at 11/10 (2.10) with Paddy Power
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Al Hain-Cole is an experienced tipster and avid follower of European football. He specialises in accumulators and if you would like to read more from Al you can follow him on Twitter here.
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