FORTUNE TELLING CHAMPIONS LEAGUE EDITION

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AC Milan To Win Group +250 ---- AC Milan To Win UCL 60-1

Last year’s draw handed Milan an extremely difficult group, but this year’s group is much more favorable, and perhaps I’m just a sucker for vertical black stripes being a Newcastle United fan….

That being said, while some might feel it unlikely that the defending Serie A champions will win the group, that honor many feel belongs to Chelsea. I’m not so sure, to say the least —— Chelsea lacks a striker who has shown the ability to consistently score goals, their midfield is aging, and their keeper position is something to be VERY worried about. Outside of two solid wingbacks, I’m struggling to see why Chelsea deserves to be such heavy favorites in this group.
On the otherside, I expect Milan will be able to do no worse than second in this group —- As much as I like Red Bull Salzburg as a trendy underdog pick in individual games, I rate Milan a step above over a six-game sample.
Beyond that, my interest in Milan lies in the fact it was a very balanced side last season. In its title-winning campaign, the Rossoneri finished with the second-best expected goal differential — fourth in expected goals for, second in expected goals against. Moreover, Milan generated at least 1.5 expected goals in half of its 38 domestic fixtures and conceded under one expected goal in 22 of 38 fixtures. What this indicates to me is that this Milan side is capable of winning games in multiple different styles and doesn’t have to rely on a single unit to excel.
Furthermore, AC Milan posted an outstanding record in league matches against top-tier opposition. In 14 matches against the seven sides immediately below it in the final table, Milan was 9-2-3 (W-L-D) and had a +8.5 expected goal differential on a +10 actual goal differential in those matches.
With manager Stefano Pioli’s side off to a promising start in the league this year, I’ll take a shot with Milan at anything better than 50/1.


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