While Manchester United can field a weakened team away to Galatasaray, Neil Lennon and Roberto Di Matteo can ill-afford such luxury for games which will have a big bearing on how their season pans out.
Benfica v Celtic 19.45
Four games played and Celtic are in a strong position to qualify for the Champions League knockout stage after that amazing 2-1 win against Barcelona which saw the Scottish champions produce a spirited performance that left the tournament favourites stunned.
Victory in Portugal on Tuesday night would mean Neil Lennon’s team would be into the last sixteen with a game to spare and the visitors are 13/2 (bet365 £200 free bets) to claim another historic victory against a team that sit three points behind them in the table.
While Celtic were making the impossible possible against Barcelona, the Estádio da Luz played host to Benfica beating Spartak Moscow 2-0 and Jorge Jesus’ team desperately need to win this encounter to stand any chance of going through with Barca.
The bookmakers are fully expecting this to happen despite the teams drawing 0-0 at Celtic Park and a home win can be backed at 1/2 (Sky Bet bookmaker) although we should note that the Scottish champions nearly claimed a point in the Nou Camp having previously won away to Spartak Moscow.
The Bhoys really come alive on these Champions League nights and the draw looks the best value at 10/3 despite the fact that Benfica are enjoying a four-game winning run which saw them win 1-0 at Rio Ave in their last game.
Celtic won 2-0 at Aberdeen on Saturday and that man Victor Wanyama will be hoping to continue his heroics after scoring against Barca, with Betfred offering 28/1 that he scores the first of this match, although the dangerous Oscar Cardozo is clearly the danger man for the home side and needs to be watched at all times.
Juventus v Chelsea 19.45
Two goals from Oscar back in September appeared to have given Chelsea an unassailable lead against Juventus although goals from Vidal and Quagliarella ensured that the Italian champions left Stamford Bridge with a point and that 2-2 draw could come back to haunt the Blues during this Champions League group stage.
The English team sit second in Group E after beating Shakhtar Donetsk a fortnight ago, although they now head to Italy for a crunch game and the bookies aren’t anticipating an away win on Tuesday night, with Chelsea available at 7/2 (BetVictor bookmaker) to claim a victory which would take them to the knockout stage of the Champions League.
Saturday’s 2-1 defeat at West Brom was hardly the ideal preparation for Roberto Di Matteo’s team although they do have players who can punish Juve on the counter-attack and it was noticeable that Juan Mata was initially left on the bench at The Hawthorns to preserve the Spaniard for this encounter.
Mata will definitely start this match and bet365 offer 14/1 that he opens the scoring against a Juventus team who thrashed Nordsjælland two weeks ago after surprisingly being held to a 1-1 draw in Denmark – a result which nobody saw coming.
Juve sit top of Serie A with an impressive 32 points from 13 games played although Lazio demonstrated on Saturday that the Old Lady can be nullified after holding them to a goalless draw and that is a result that Chelsea would love to achieve.
Odds of 14/5 are on offer that this game ends all square, while Juve are a best price 10/11 to claim victory before a final game away at Shakhtar Donetsk which should be a cliff hanger whatever happens on Tuesday night.
Galatasaray v Manchester United 19.45
The Red Devils have safely qualified for the last sixteen of the Champions League and that means Sir Alex Ferguson is likely to play a youthful team for Tuesday night’s game in the Türk Telekom Arena.
United’s guaranteed top spot has had a huge bearing on the odds for this match and Galatasaray can be backed at 6/5 (Blue Square bookmaker) to win this encounter, with the Turkish champions chasing that second spot and currently sitting just ahead of CFR Cluj and Braga.
Gala were slightly unfortunate to lose 1-0 at Old Trafford, although a home defeat against Braga and home draw with Cluj left them bottom of the group before winning in Romania to mean that destiny is back in their own hands.
It’s clearly ideal for the Turkish side that their opponents are already into the knockout stage although Ferguson will still be sending a team to win this encounter and the visitors are 13/5 (Sky Bet) to continue their 100% record in the competition this season.
We’re very unlikely to see Robin van Persie, Rio Ferdinand or Antonio Valencia feature in this match, although Danny Welbeck could prove a handful in attack and the England forward is 9/1 to open the scoring.