The semifinals of the Champions League are set.
Manchester City easily dispatched Bayern Munich to knock the German giants from the competition on Wednesday while Inter played an entertaining 3-3 tie with Benfica to beat the Portuguese side 5-3 on aggregate.
Both City and Inter join Real Madrid and AC Milan in the semifinals after those two teams advanced on Tuesday. Real Madrid took out hapless Chelsea while AC Milan eliminated likely Serie A winners Napoli from the competition.
Each semifinal matchup presents a ton of intrigue too. Manchester City vs. Real Madrid is a two-leg tie worthy of being the final while we’re guaranteed to see a Milan team playing for the right to hoist the UCL trophy on June 10.
Here’s a look at the betting odds for each of the four remaining teams ahead of the semifinals. The first semifinal legs are May 9 and 10 and the return matchups are May 16 and May 17.
Manchester City (-150)
City is still looking for its first Champions League title as Pep Guardiola chases the only thing that has eluded him at the club. There’s no disputing how and why City are the favorites for the title; they have the best striker and the deepest team in the world. But it’s also not like City is without flaws either. They can be vulnerable on the counter-attack and are prone to giving up goals in quick succession.
The matchup against Madrid will be a fascinating one. It’s very easy to see Madrid sitting back and soaking up pressure before trying to break with Rodrygo and Vinicius Jr. Will this semifinal matchup be the time for Guardiola to try something different? He has a tendency to do something unexpected tactically in big Champions League matches and it doesn’t always work. Playing it straight has produced dominant performances so far. He may be better served to keep doing what’s working.
Real Madrid (+350)
The defending Champions League winners will be significant favorites to win it again if they get past Manchester City. Luka Modric and Toni Kroos are still pulling the strings in midfield and are more than capable of going toe-to-toe with City and even bossing the game. But they could also get overrun as well, especially if City crowds the middle of the park and stretch them both.
Karim Benzema has been phenomenal in the Champions League and is exceptionally good at giving Vinicius space to be one of the best wings in the world. How Madrid copes with City on the left side of the defense will be key; Camavinga has been playing left back in recent matches since Ferland Mendy’s injury.
AC Milan (+650)
Here’s your sleeper pick to win the Champions League if you’re looking to bet someone from the other side of the bracket. Milan’s defense has been incredibly good so far this season and the possession stats from the second leg of the quarterfinal win against Napoli were comical. Milan had just 27% of possession and conceded 23 shots. But just four of those shots were on goal and Napoli didn’t score until there were just seconds left in the game.
Milan hasn’t had the majority of possession in any of its Champions League knockout games so far and that certainly won’t change if it plays City in the final. It will be fully content to let City have the ball and attempt to strike on the counter with Rafael Leao.
Inter Milan (+650)
The San Siro will be rocking for both legs of the Milan derby. Not only are they facing off for a spot in the final, but Milan and Inter are fourth and fifth in the Serie A table with eight games remaining in the season. That’s significant — the top four teams in Serie A automatically qualify for next year’s Champions League. But the UCL winner also automatically qualifies.
Edin Dzeko, Nico Barella and Romelu Lukaku each have three goals in the Champions League as Inter has found success getting forward with its wingbacks. Milan knows that very well. These semifinal games will be the fourth and fifth times they’ve played each other this season. Milan won the first Serie A game 3-2 before Inter won their Italian Supercoppa matchup 3-0 and then won the second Serie A game 1-0.