Champions League: Chelsea to kickstart season with European win

Wednesday night sees the first round of Champions League group games complete with many wondering whether Chelsea will lose again, Barcelona will tear Roma apart again and if Gent v Lyon will be as dull as everyone expects.

Although the latter may not be the most attractive match on offer, at least from a betting point of view, there are still four other punts Ladbrokes News like the look of.

The below selections combine into an accumulator that pays out at better than 15/1 should all of our picks land, so stop wasting time and climb on board:

Arsenal to beat Dinamo Zagreb @ 1/2

The Gunners look good value to kick off the group phase with a road win. Zagreb are yet to be beaten in any competition this season, but are yet to face a unit as revered as Arsenal’s having passed Molde and Skenderbeu in their Champions League qualifiers.

Dynamo Kiev to win or draw against Porto @ 8/15

The Ukrainians have won six of their seven outings since losing the domestic Super Cup to Shakhtar early on in the season, conceding just twice in that time. Both of those goals came when playing on the road though, so Porto – unbeaten themselves – may find a first group win hard to come by.

Chelsea (-2) to beat Maccabi Tel Aviv @ 11/8

Often a cup competition can spark a faltering side into top gear and with the Blues yet to enter the Capital One Cup, this friendly Champions League outing can act as the catalyst for their season.

Although Arsenal lie next in the fixture schedule, Jose Mourinho would be wise to select his strongest side and let them blow away the cobwebs.

Both teams to score and Bayern Munich to beat Olympiacos @ 9/4

Although it has been a familiarly dominant start to their domestic season for the Germans, they have only kept two clean sheets in six games and are yet to do so on the road.

Despite their tendency to let the opposition score, they have still managed to win five of those games. The Greeks, meanwhile, have scored eight goals in their opening three games of the season.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Matt Wiggins

No idyllic sound comes close to leather on willow for Matt, whose previous experience includes stints with Spin Magazine and Surrey County Cricket Club. It's not just cricket that interests him though, with football, golf, tennis and any American sport not played on ice all high on his list of favourites.