Sizing Up Man United’s Champions League Group Stage Chances

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Manchester United commence their 2017-18 UEFA Champions League campaign on September 12 when they host FC Basel in group play. The Red Devils have an all time record of one win, two draws and one loss against the Swiss side. All four meetings occurred in Champions League play, in the 2003-03 and 2011-12 season.

The return leg, in Switzerland, will be November 22. Also in Group A with United are Benfica and CSKA Moscow. The Red Devils travel to the Russian capital on September 27, and welcome them to Old Trafford on December 5.

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Finally, they’ll visit Benfica in Lisbon, Portugal on October 18, with the home return leg on Halloween. The top two finishers in group play move on to the knockout round, with the third place finisher demoted to Europa League. The last place finisher sees their European football campaign come to an end.

So who’s moving on and who’s going home from Group A? Well, the bookies have United as an overwhelming Group A favorite. Looking at Group A odds, United are 2/5 favorites to win according to Sky Bet. CSKA Moscow are 11/1, FC Basel are 16/1 and Benfica comes in at 3/1.

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United are the only Group A side on Sky Bet’s board to win Champions League out right, and they’re being backed at 11/1.

Three  more Premier League sides show in their field to win Champions League, with Manchester City being backed at 11/1, Chelsea at 16/1 and Liverpool showing 22/1. At 4/1, the champions of the past two European campaigns, Real Madrid, are the overall favorite to win the whole tournament.

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank.net and TheBank.News, which is partnered with News Now and Minute Media. Banks, a former writer for the Washington Times, NBC Chicago.com and Chicago Tribune.com, currently contributes regularly to WGN CLTV and Chicago Now.

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