Expect Barcelona to beat BATE to nil in Champions League

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Barcelona are a particularly short price to beat BATE Borisov, but taking the 8/11 that Pep Guardiola’s team win to nil on their first ever trip to Belarus looks the best bet on offer in the fixture.

With Barcelona’s odds being 1/7 to beat BATE and collect their first Group H victory this season, many punters will be hoping for better value elsewhere in the market.

BATE have lost all four of their showdowns in European competition with Spanish opposition and perhaps more importantly, they failed to score in either of their home clashes in Minsk with Villarreal and Real Madrid.

It is 12/1 that BATE do beat Barcelona, which would also represent a first ever home win in the Champions League group stages.

AC Milan started their Group H campaign solidly with a draw in Barcelona and will be keen to improve their disappointing home form in the competition in recent seasons, when Viktoria Plzen visit the San Siro.

Milan have only won once at home in the competition in the past two seasons and are on the brink of losing three in a row for the first time.

It is 1/4 in the Champions League odds that Milan do beat the Czech tournament debutants, but there are grounds to believe that Viktoria Plzen can gain an unexpected result.

They won all of their three away games to qualify for the group stages and are 10/1 to triumph again, while the draw can be backed 5/1.

Meanwhile, in Group G, Shakhtar Donetsk look the big bankers at 2/5 to beat Apoel Nicosia.

Only Barcelona have won at Shakhtar in their last 16 European home games and in this sequence the Ukrainian champions have triumphed on 11 occasions, including in all three home fixtures in the group stages last season.

The other clash sees Zenit Saint Petersburg entertain Porto and preference is for the visitors at 6/4 as they look to maintain their 100 per cent winning record in Russia following their two previous victories.

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Craig Kemp

Craig has written for Ladbrokes since the 2010 World Cup, having previously gained a Media & Sports Journalism degree and contributed to publications including the Racing Post. His main areas of interest are horse racing and UFC, but he is also an avid X Factor gambler and likes nothing more than indulging in a spot of Hip Hop Karaoke.