Real Madrid finished the Spanish league one point behind eventual champions Barcelona. According to the former’s manager Zinedine Zidane, the latter deserved to win the league, while Real can take solace in the fact they have an opportunity to win an 11th UEFA Champions League Cup on May 28th versus Atlético. This is not just sour grapes either; the European Cup is arguably the most prestigious prize in soccer, and thus could be considered even more important than a mere league championship. Not to mention that it gives people who bet on soccer one last major rush for the season.
And speaking of soccer betting, who should one put one’s money on? Real Madrid has already proven to be superior to Atlético, finishing second in the league to Atlético’s third. But of course the Champions League final is not about points; it’s about goals. Both squads have top flight attackers who can turn the tide of a game at the drop of a hat. Atlético’s best bet seems to be Frenchman Antoine Griezmann, who has scored 7 goals in the Champions League to add to his 22-goal league production. Most people who bet on soccer would immediately spring up Fernando Torres as the real threat. Really? Fernando Torres? Really? He’s scored only one goal so far in European competition this year.
Cristiano Ronaldo, on the other hand, who is admittedly not everyone’s cup of tea personality-wise, makes up for that with his goal-scoring prowess – he alone has more goals than Griezmann and Torres together. Ronaldo leads the Champions League with 16 goals on the year – one short of his record of 17. Ronaldo has had another 30-goal season in La Liga, and another 50-goal year overall. In addition to that, he has scored 15 goals in all matches against Atlético Madrid. Furthermore, Karim Benzema and Gareth Bale have 24 La Liga goals this season and 28 in all contests, and 19 goals in all competitions in just 28 matches, respectively. Bale’s aerial attack is especially deadly – which already put a damper on Atlético’s pretenses of winning the Champions League in 2014, something that fans who bet on soccer should remember well.
Another thing that soccer betting fans should take into account is that was unstoppable in the final stretch of the Spanish league, winning 12 matches in a row – the longest winning run in the tournament. And while that was sadly not enough to oust Barcelona from the top spot, it could be enough to disabuse Atlético of the notion that they might win the Champions League – if only Real Madrid keeps the momentum going. And let’s not forget Real is Madrid’s official team; Atlético is just squatting.