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Tottenham Real Madrid Betting – Injuries Ruin Spurs Against Spanish Giants

Posted by Todd Shale on 3/30/2011 2:36:22 PM
tottenham real madrid betting

Sports betting players never figured Tottenham would make it this far in their first Champions League tournament, but Spurs have surprised everyone with their attacking verve against the biggest teams in Europe. But they have injuries to their most important offensive players as they head into their quarterfinal tie against Real Madrid, and Tottenham will dig too deep of a hole in Spain to climb out of.

  • What: Soccer Betting
  • When: Tuesday, April 5th, 2:45 PM ET (at Real Madrid); Wednesday, April 13th, 2:45 PM ET (at Tottenham)
  • Where: Santiago Bernabeu, Madrid (Real Madrid); White Hart Lane, London (Tottenham)
  • Pick: Real Madrid -375

What’s On The Line

A spot in the Champions League semifinals is on the line, which Madrid is in line for their first European title since 2002, while Spurs haven’t won a European trophy since the UEFA Cup in 1984 and have been one of the most entertaining teams in their first trip to the Champions League. Both teams have a lot at stake in this two-legged tie as Madrid are looking to show they’re still one of the giants of Europe, while Tottenham are aiming to prove their prowess going forward.

Offensive Matchups: Tottenham Real Madrid Betting

Spurs could lose a large part of their attack on the wings with hamstring problems to Aaron Lennon and Gareth Bale, and what’s worse is that both players got hurt on international duty, which has to dig at Spurs. Tottenham still has Rafael van der Vaart through the middle, and the Dutch star would love to stick it to Madrid, where he spent from 2008 to 2010 before heading to White Hart Lane. This could also make more room for Luka Modric, who has been one of Spurs’ best players as of late, and they may even need Steven Pienaar, who has disappointed since moving from Everton. Up front, Peter Crouch, Jermain Defoe and Roman Pavlyuchenko could be starved of service without the wingers. With Bale especially in the side, Spurs can play with anyone in the world. 

Speaking of wingers, you can’t really call Cristiano Ronaldo a winger anymore, even though that’s where he starts. Ronaldo has license to move wherever he can pick up the ball and use his speed and bag of tricks, and he’s been aided as of late by Karim Benzema, who has really benefitted from a run in a team and had scored in seven of eight games leading up to this weekend’s La Liga match against Sporting Gijon. Madrid has Mesut Ozil and Angel Di Maria supporting from midfield, Emmanuel Adebayor has been decent off the bench, and even Marcelo can bomb in from his fullback position. Kaka may be back from injury, but he’s been hurt so much it doesn’t matter.

Betting Edge: Draw 

Defensive Matchups: Tottenham Real Madrid Betting

Spurs proved a lot of soccer betting players wrong with a strong defensive showing in a 0-0 draw against AC Milan at home in the second leg of their tie with the Italians in the last round, and while it wasn’t fun to watch, it got them to this point. Sandro has done a very good job in front of the back four in the absence of the injured Tom Huddlestone, who could be in action this weekend at Wigan, while Michael Dawson has been an absolute rock in front of keeper Gomes. William Gallas has earned a contract extension because of his play, and along with Dawson playing extremely well, the oft-injured duo of Ledley King and Jonathan Woodgate may be on their way out of White Hart Lane. Benoit Assou-Ekotto and Vedran Corluka are serviceable fullbacks.

For all of Madrid’s offensive power, they haven’t allowed more than one goal in a match in 18 outings. Xabi Alonso sits in front of the back four and directs traffic, but Lassana Diarra needs to get a solid run in the team because he’s the player that could fill the role that Claude Makalele used to. Alonso is more of a passer in the mold of Milan’s Andrea Pirlo, but Diarra is a ball-winner of the highest order, so he could be in the starting 11 when Madrid heads to London. Ricardo Carvalho has become the best defender Madrid has had in a long time and shores up the middle, while Marcelo and Sergio Ramos man the fullback positions, although Ramos can move inside if necessary. Who lines up beside Carvalho and in front of keeper Iker Casillas? Will it be Pepe or will they fit in Alvaro Arbeloa, moving Ramos back inside?

Betting Edge: Real Madrid

Notable Injuries: Tottenham Real Madrid Betting

It’s essential that either Bale (hamstring) or Lennon (hamstring) line up for Spurs, hopefully Bale, but Lennon would do. Huddlestone (ankle) played in a reserve match this week and may be able to suit up on the weekend, but he hasn’t played a first-team match in four months. Woodgate (calf), who played nine games in three years at Madrid, has been injured so long that it doesn’t even matter that he’ll be out, and the same goes for King (knee).

Kaka (knee) could be available this weekend after an injury-filled season, but Ozil has stepped into his role quite nicely. Apparently, Ronaldo (hamstring) is also an injury worry after pushing through it in the second leg over Lyon, and then he aggravated it against Atletico Madrid. He probably won’t play this weekend against Sporting Gijon, and it would have to be pretty bad for Ronaldo not to play against Spurs.

Edge: Real Madrid

Outlook And Pick: Tottenham Real Madrid Betting

Soccer betting odds have Madrid rated at -375 to advance to the next round, while Spurs are listed at +275, and it’s tough to bet against Tottenham after they disposed of AC Milan and Inter Milan. These two last met in the 1984-85 UEFA Cup, with Madrid winning 1-0 over two legs, and we expect this tie to be more of a high-scoring affair. With all of the attacking flair on either side, we trust Madrid’s defense more, and we also believe that the hamstring problems of Lennon and Bale are bigger than Ronaldo, and it’s imperative that they play, especially in the first leg in Spain. It was a nice run for Spurs, but they could be overrun in Madrid, and while they’ll make it close at White Hart Lane, it won’t be enough. Take Real Madrid in your online betting picks.

Pick: Real Madrid

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