Champions League 2012/13 Preview

by Thomas

Europe’s elite club competition – the Champions League looks set to be as enthralling as ever this year with a number of teams all hopeful of lifting the famous trophy in May 2013.

Last season we were treated to some real drama and in the end, against all odds Chelsea went on to win the competition.

No one had really given them much hope but they showed if you have the desire to win with a little bit of luck along the way, you can be successful.

Some teams set this as the main objective for the campaign, ahead of their own domestic league’s which just goes to show what a huge tournament it is.

It really is the best against the best and every game creates such a special atmosphere.

2012-13 Champions League Betting Odds

TeamOutright Winner Odds
Barcelona4.50
Real Madrid5.00
Manchester City8.80
Manchester United13.00
Bayern Munich15.00
Chelsea17.00
Paris Saint-Germain17.00
Juventus19.00
Bor Dortmund26.00
Arsenal26.00
AC Milan29.00
Valencia67.00
FC Porto81.00
Malaga81.00
Schalke 0481.00
Benfica101.00
Ajax126.00
Udinese126.00
Lille126.00
Bor Monchengladbach151.00
Shakhtar Donetsk151.00
Montpellier151.00
Spartak Moscow201.00
Fenerbahce251.00
Zenit St Petersburg251.00
Galatasaray251.00
Panathinaikos251.00
Braga251.00
Dynamo Kiev301.00
Olympiakos301.00

Champions League Winner

It is two Spanish sides who lead the way in terms of favourites to win the Champions League and there is no prizes for guessing who they are – Real Madrid and Barcelona.

Many people had backed the dream ‘El Clasico’ final last campaign but both teams stumbled at the semi-final stage against the odds.

Barcelona are the slight favourites at the moment with odds of 4.50 (Bet365) on lifting the trophy.
It is a new era for the Catalan club as Tito Vilanova takes charge at the Nou Camp and in his debut season, success in this tournament would prove that he was the right man for the job.

With the squad he has at his disposal, it is not a bad job to take. A team full of exciting talent, many of whom were involved in Spain’s success at Euro 2012.

As for Real, they have the Champions League expert at the helm of their side. Jose Mourinho has won the competition twice in the past with Inter Milan and Porto and after winning the La Liga title back in May, this is sure to be what he wants to get his hands on.

The record nine-time winners of this trophy have not been victorious since 2002, something that may surprise a few given the stature of the club. You can back them at 5.00 (Paddypower)

Then there are two English clubs that are amongst the favourites – Manchester City and Manchester United.
Both had tournaments to forget last year, crashing out at the group stages and this time out will be desperate to show that was a one off.

After delivering Premier League title success, City will now want to add this European crown to their cabinet to show they can be the dominant force in football for some time to come.

With their big spending power and the confidence so high in the squad – they could go all the way this season.

Although Roberto Mancini has not added to his squad yet, they may still have enough to make it past the group stages. After that the Italian boss could add to his armour in January and put them in fantastic shape. The Citizens are being offered at 8.00 (Ladbrokes).

United are usually so consistent in the Champions League of course and this made last season’s performances a real shock.

Sir Alex Fergusson will be doing all he can to make sure his men get to the latter stages in the 2012/13 campaign.

They can be backed at 13.00 (boylesports) to lift the trophy for the first time since 2008. After not winning any silverware in 2012, expect United to come back stronger than ever.

After that, last year’s finalists Bayern Munich and Chelsea – both at 15.00 (Bet365).

As mentioned, it was the English side that came out on top in that encounter, in the most dramatic fashion – on penalties.

For different reasons, each team will now want success.

The defeat in the final would have hurt Bayern a lot, especially as they dominated the majority of the game. Now they need to show their mental strength as well as playing ability to come back and challenge for the trophy.

As for Chelsea, retaining the title is something that no club has done since 1989/90. Should they achieve this, then they would write their names in the history books.

Also keep a look out for French big spenders PSG, Italian champions Juventus and Bundesliga winners Borussia Dortmund.

Champions League Golden Boot Winner

As it is in La Liga, the battle for this season’s golden boot could be between Lionel Messi of Barcelona and Cristiano Ronaldo from Real Madrid.

The remarkable thing about these two is that they are not out and out strikers but still seem to find the net more than anyone else in world football.

Messi took the accolade last season when he scored an incredible 14 goals, including five in one match.
The 25-year-old will be the one that Barca turn to when things aren’t quite going right and he is capable of producing something from nothing.

As for Ronaldo, he has the ability to score any kind of goal whether it is a bullet header or a 30-yard screamer.

The Portuguese international found the net ten times for Real in the tournament last season and he was well supported by Karim Benzema, who helped out with seven goals.

About The Author

has written 63 awesome posts on tipsandpicks.com.

Thomas is a sports journalist residing in Norwich, UK and focusses on all things football here at tipsandpicks.com