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Blues to Suffer Some More Pain in Spain

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Football has a habit of throwing up some intriguing plots ahead of big matches and the leading characters in tonight’s clash at the Bernabéu will steal all the pre-match headlines.

In the blue corner Frank Lampard has been thrust back in to the Stamford Bridge hotseat 26 months after he vacated it when the club were sitting mid-table and out of the FA Cup at the hands of Luton. In the white corner, his vastly experienced former gaffer, Carlo Ancelotti for whom Lampard was vice-captain when they were Premier League winners in 2010.

Lampard might feel he has some unfinished business in the Champions League with Chelsea. After all, it was his squad that Thomas Tuchel guided to their 2021 triumph in Porto after Lampard was relieved of his duties in the January of that year with the club in the last-16 of the competition.

It’s now his turn to pick up the reigns at the quarter-final stage and his first task is to navigate a way past 14-time Champions of Europe, Real Madrid.

Mardid thumped Liverpool 6-2 on aggregate in the previous round and raised some eyebrows with a stunning 4-0 win at the Nou Camp in the Copa Del Rey last midweek but a 3-2 home defeat to Villarreal on Saturday underlined an inconsistency that has plagued thier season.

But it’s hard to make a case for a struggling Chelsea side to take anything from their trip to the Spanish capital and Madrid look pretty solid at 7/10 to take a first leg lead. The Blues have failed to score in their last three outings so a Real Madrid win to nil will be popular at 7/4.

The irrepressible Karim Benzema scored back-to-back hat-tricks last week and scored three over the two legs against Liverpool. He’ll be the obvious danger and is 11/10 to score anytime or 3/1 to open the scoring. A third hat-trick in four games pays 22/1.

A quick glance at the Serie A table would have punters all over the 4/7 on Napoli to qualify from their tie against fellow-countrymen, AC Milan.

Luciano Spalletti’s men are 22 points ahead of the current Italian champions but a resounding 4-0 win for I Rossoneri at the Stadio Diego Armando Maradona a few weeks ago has thrown the cat amongst the pigeons ahead of their two-legged Champions League showdown.

Napoli are on the brink of their first Serie A title since 1990 and are daring to dream about adding the Champions League title to what has already been an incredible season. We tipped them at 7s to win the big cup before they knocked out Eintracht Frankfurt and a kind-looking draw has seen them chopped in to 4s but this tie has taken on a different complexion since then.

Not only do Milan go in to the match bouyed by their win in Naples but Serie A’s top scorer Victor Osimhen misses out again for the visitors. The Nigerian striker has scored 21 in the league and a further four in Europe so will be a big loss for Napoli.

That might swing things in the hosts favour at the San Siro. Napoli will know that as long as they hang in on the tie they should have Osimhen back for the return leg on their own turf at 8/5.

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After the fanfare of The Masters we’re back on the regular tour this week and The Caddy casts his eye over the RBC Heritage in South Carolina.

Racing Tips

With the poor weather conditions hitting the UK Rizzel has opted for just one selection for Wednesday’s action, coming at Catterick on the flat.

As always, let us know your best betting tips and predictions for today in the comments section below and good luck with all your bets!

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