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UEFA Champions League qualifying: Final play-off ties to be concluded this week

13:08 BST 27/08/2018
Klaas Jan Huntelaar Ajax 2018
Greek champions AEK Athens, as well as former European Cup winners Ajax, are in action this coming Tuesday (28 August)

A place in the group stages of the planet’s most lucrative and renowned club football competition is now within touching distance. Just 90 minutes potentially stand between some of Europe’s smaller fish and a place in the UEFA Champions League final 32 – all that stands in the way is the return leg of this week’s final qualifying round.

First things first

Before you go any further, head on over to the Oddsshark website, find your favourite betting site and get your account up and running using your credit card. As a new customer and with the group stages of the Champions League set to kick off next month, there should be a whole host of promotions and offers available to you.

Where should I be investing my money?

Greek league champions AEK Athens will be looking to guarantee their place in the group stages of the continental competition at the expense of Hungarian outfit MOL Vidi. AEK beat MOL 2-1 in Budapest last week and should be confident of completing the job on home soil this Tuesday night.

Looking at a simple bet based solely on who will make it through, AEK are the overwhelming favourites to do so. The Greek outfit are at just 1.040 to progress, while MOL are now all the way out at 13.00 as a result of that home defeat last week, according to Oddsshark.

And taking just this second leg match into account, AEK are against clearly in front. The Greeks are at just 1.50 to pick up a win in front of their own fans, with MOL out at 7.50 to win on the road and potentially turn this tie on its head – a comfortable, 2-0 win for AEK is priced at 6.00, meaning that a US$5 bet would lead to a pay out of US$30.

Dinamo Zagreb in driving seat against Young Boys

Having secured a 1-1 draw in Switzerland last week, Croatian club Dinamo would look to have a slight advantage when they host Young Boys on Tuesday. However, it would not be prudent to write off Young Boys just yet however – the Swiss league leaders hit five at the weekend and are in the mood for goals.

And it was the Swiss club who dominated this first leg tie, but ultimately their profligacy in front of goal cost them dear. Now Dinamo must try and make them pay a high price.

The betting is very close in this one, with the Croatian club at 1.75 to qualify for the group stages. Alternatively, you could double your money if you think Young Boys will make it through at a price of 2.00.

Taking this return encounter into consideration, you could more than double your money by backing Dinamo to get the win they need in front of their own fans at 2.25. Young Boys are at a higher price but have shown they are more than capable of getting the job done at a price of 3.25.

A 2-1 away win for Young Boys is priced competitively at 11.00, offering more than a ten-fold return on any investment. You can also back over 2.5 goals in the game at 1.80 and both teams to score at 1.72.

Ajax look to defend first leg lead

And finally, European giants Ajax travel to Ukraine to take on Dynamo Kiev and defend the 3-1 lead they won in the first leg last week. Kiev, meanwhile, have made a strong start to their domestic championship, winning their first four games before being held to a 1-1 draw this past weekend.

Ajax have not reached the group stages of the Champions League since the 2014/15 season but are in pole position to do so this year. The Dutch side are at just 1.12 to qualify, with Dynamo out at 6.00 to overturn that 3-1 deficit from the first leg.

The betting is much closer for this second leg tie, but Ajax still have their noses in front. The former European Cup winners are at 2.55 to pick up a win in Kiev, with home side Dynamo only slightly higher at 2.62.

A draw is priced highest of all at 3.40, but with that more than sufficing for Ajax we may well see a stalemate. A 1-1 draw comes in at 6.50, while both teams to score is priced at just 1.66.

Champions League qualifying 2nd leg ties:

(1.50) AEK x MOL (7.50); draw (3.75)

(2.25) Dinamo Zagreb x Young Boys (3.20); draw (3.30)

(2.62) Dynamo Kiev x Ajax (2.55); draw (3.40)