THE biggest prize in club football is up for grabs in Kiev tonight and the showdown between Real Madrid and Liverpool has all the makings of a thriller.
Real are aiming for an third straight Champions League crown while Liverpool are gunning for their first since the miracle of Istanbul in 2005.
Both teams to score
First port of call has to be goals. Liverpool are the top scorers in the competition and Real Madrid are no slouches in the scoring stakes either. Both sides see attack as the best form of defence and their paths to the final has been paved with goals. Take btts at 2-5 to get things started.
The Reds' 7-6 aggregate win over Roma was the highest-scoring Champions League semi-final ever and there's a decent chance of another goal glut.
Liverpool's front free of Mo Salah, Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mane can have a field day against Real's shaky defence while at the other end Cristiano Ronaldo looks primed to enhance his prolific scoring record against a Liverpool backline short on top-level experience.
I'm chancing over 3.5 goals at 11-10.
Jurgen Klopp's side may not lift the trophy – Real's experience of getting the job done no matter how they're playing could sway it – but they can certainly cause havoc up front.
Starting in the qualifiers, Liverpool have played 14 matches in Europe this season and scored 2+ in 12 of them. Salah and Co have the pace, finishing and flair to trouble any defence and Real's rearguard is far from convincing.
The Spaniards have conceded at least two goals in four of their last five outings in all competitions and Liverpool to net 2+ is backable at evens.
Real captain Sergio Ramos is the king of cards – he has copped 279 during his career and has the worst disciplinary record in the history of La Liga, the Champions League and Spanish national team.
The centre-back will have his work cut out with Salah, Firmino and Mane buzzing all around him and Ramos looks a fair shout for a card at 5-4.
Real are La Liga's top team for corners with their matches seeing an average of 10.8. Liverpool's league average is over six per game and over 9 corners in the final pays 4-11.
Bet Builder Tip
- Both teams to score
- Over 3.5 goals
- Liverpool to score 2+
- Ramos to be carded
- Over 9 corners
- (7-1, bet365)