Man City backed to beat Sarri's Chelsea, Juventus can upset Real Madrid
A blank midweek for the column largely thanks to Real Madrid's 2-1 defeat to Manchester United. The focus shifts to Wembley this weekend though and we feel Manchester City can beat Chelsea in English football's traditional curtain raiser.
Running total: +£13.21
Manchester City face Chelsea in the Community Shield this weekend, and the form guide strongly favours Pep Guardiola's men. City did the double over the Blues last season, recording 1-0 wins at the Etihad and at Stamford Bridge. The last time the teams met at Wembley was in the 2013 FA Cup semifinal, where a Sergio Aguero-inspired City claimed a 2-1 win. And in the last Community Shield meeting between the teams in 2012, City won 3-2 at Villa Park. It's a new era for Chelsea of course, with Maurizio Sarri replacing Antonio Conte. Sarri has vowed to transform Chelsea's style of play based on rapid and efficient passing and movement. Time will tell whether this will be effective in the Premier League, but the early signs have been good. However, Guardiola's City broke all kinds of records last season and look the pick to start their 2018-19 campaign with yet another trophy.
The Tasty Treble
There is ICC action this weekend too and a huge crowd is expected when Real Madrid face Juventus at the FedExField. Los Blancos lost 2-1 to Manchester United last time out, a disappointing result given how United's preseason had been going to that point. Indeed Juventus look a spot of value here at 21/10, having looked sharp in both their previous ICC matches. Lyon could also be worth backing at 19/10 against Inter Milan. The French outfit have been full of goals so far this summer, and looked excellent in beating Benfica 3-2 last time out. A treble consisting of Juventus, Lyon and Manchester City offers juicy odds of better than 17/1 with bet365.
Selection: £1 on the treble at 17.87/1 with bet365
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First Goal Flutter
Manchester City will be without Kevin De Bruyne at Wembley, but Leroy Sane looks set to feature and the German flying machine looks a big price at 7/1 to score first. Sane hit 14 goals last season, and at 22 is only going to get better.
Selection: £2 on Sane to score first at 7/1 with bet365
The Wildcard Tip
AC Milan and Barcelona, two giants of the European game, also lock horns this weekend at the Levi's Stadium. The clubs have won 43 league titles between them but both have looked a long way short of their best so far in the US. For this reason it could pay to back the draw in California.
The Bookie Basher
Having signed Cristiano Ronaldo, Juventus will be expected to have a real go in Europe this season and can lay down an early marker by beating the reigning European champions in Maryland. Ronaldo will miss the match but a 2-0 win for Juventus is as big as 16/1 and might be worth a small interest given how Real Madrid laboured against Manchester United in their last ICC fixture.