Manchester City are on the verge of elimination from the Champions League when they host Ajax at the Etihad Stadium on Tuesday evening.
Roberto Mancini’s side may be the Premier League champions but they have picked up just a solitary point from their opening three matches in Europe and were beaten 3-1 in Amsterdam.
City will be looking to avenge that disappointment and are 4/9 (1.44) favourites with Bet365 to get that first win on the board here.
Ajax are still unlikely to reach the knockout stages, given the impressive form of Real Madrid and Borussia Dortmund in Group D, but will be hopeful of at least snatching a Europa League spot.
Ajax are a chunky 6/1 (7.00) to complete a double over City and are 7/2 (4.50) with Bet365 to stay in third place with a draw.
In the goalscorer markets, Sergio Aguero is 4/1 (5.00) favourite to open the scoring for the home side, while the club’s top scorer this season, Edin Dzeko, can be backed at 9/2 (5.50).
For Ajax, midfielder Christian Eriksen might be worth a punt at 12/1 (13.00) to heap further misery on Mancini.
But the smart money is on City here. For all the frustrations of another underwhelming European campaign, they remain unbeaten in the league and in continental football in front of their own fans this season.
While Ajax were impressive a fortnight ago, that victory is their only win in their last six and they are unlikely to repeat the trick in Manchester.
The pick of the bets is to back City to find a breakthrough before the interval and get that much needed three points that will keep their slim hopes of progression alive.
City are even money (2.0) with Bet365 to lead at half-time and full-time here.
But the value bet is a really tempting one. Five of City’s seven games at the Etihad Stadium this season have seen them lead 1-0 at the break.
That half-time scoreline can be backed at 12/5 (3.40) and looks a good price given that this was the scenario at the interval in their last Eredivisie game and their previous away game in Europe.
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|City at HT/FT at evens (2.00) with Bet365
||City 1-0 at HT at 12/5 (3.40) with Bet365
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Adam Bate is a professional freelance journalist who specialises in football and betting. He is editor of GhostGoal which can be found here - you can also follow Adam on
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