Real Madrid (-149) at Wolfsburg (+425), Draw (+290)
After getting their best win of the season on the weekend (2-1 away over Barcelona), Real Madrid look to follow up with a Champions League result against Wolfsburg. The first leg of the two-game aggregate goal series will go this afternoon at Volkswagen Arena (2:45 PM Eastern).
Madrid’s win at Barca in El Clasico provided a marked boost for a team that seemed lost just a few weeks ago. Real had fallen well off the pace in the race for the La Liga crown – and are still seven points back of Messi and company – but have won five straight domestically and now have a great chance to reach the UCL’s final four.
The Merengues come into the quarterfinals as massive favorites. Not only do they have a huge edge in terms of sheer talent, but Real also have experience on their side. They’ve reached at least the semis each year since 2010-11, winning it all in 2013-14.
Wolfsburg are in the quarterfinals for the first time in club history.
Making matters worse for the Germans, Real Madrid are unbeaten on the road in the Champions League (3-1-0), with the lone draw coming in Paris against French powerhouse PSG.
They advanced to the quarters with a 4-0 win on aggregate over AS Roma, including a 2-0 win in Italy.
Wolfsburg have overachieved by reaching the quarterfinals. They already eliminated favored Manchester United in the Group Stage, then got a favorable draw in the Round of 16, ousting KAA Gent 4-2 on aggregate.
They’re perfect at home in UCL play (4-0-0), but they haven’t been dominant (winning each game by one) and have yet to face the likes of Real Madrid.
These teams will be meeting for the first time today, and the massive talent gap between the rosters will see Real take the lead in the head-to-head.
Pick: Real Madrid (-149).
(Photo Credit: Jan S0L0 (Flickr) https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/)