If you’re looking to keep it simple, you can do worse than backing the team you think will come out on top. A meeting between two English sides is a great opportunity to do so, as current form and previous results can provide big clues as to how the match will play out.
Over the history of the two clubs, Liverpool are on top, having won 82 of the 172 games they have played – a win record of 48%. Spurs have won 48 (28%), and 42 (24%) have played out to a draw. These stats stretch back a century, however, so we need a more up-to-date snapshot. The table below shows the results from games played between the clubs over the last year, decade, and quarter-century.
|Period||Games Played||LIV Won||TOT Won||Draws||LIV-DRAW-TOT %|
Over the course of each of these periods, Liverpool have got the better of their counterparts nearly half the time. Their win percentage hovers between 40% and 50% throughout, while Tottenham are victorious around only 30% of the time. Liverpool inarguably have one of their strongest squads in years going into this final, and with previous stats backing them up, there’s a reason they’re the favourites. They’re roughly evens to take victory at Madrid’s Wanda Metropolitano, which is about the right value to back them at according to these stats.
It’s only one game, though. You might be in the camp that believes the past stats don’t matter, that anything can happen on the night, and that’s certainly true. Spurs’ 4-1 thrashing of Liverpool in October 2017 proved that on any one day the result could go either way, and there’s no accounting for how the pressure of a big final might affect the players on 1st June.
The shrewd bettor might look elsewhere for more data to back up their wagers, then. Goals scored is a good place to start, but there are tons of different markets to choose from in this area. Let’s focus on naming anytime goalscorers.
The table below shows which players have scored for each team over the last ten games, what sort of percentage that equates to, and how that stacks up with the odds offered on them scoring at any time in this year’s final. For comparison purposes, we’re using decimal odds – see the odds conversion page if you want to see how to turn these into fractional or American odds formats.
|Player||1||2||3||4||5||6||7||8||9||10||Games per Goal||Odds Offered|
As an example, this shows that Liverpool’s Sadio Mane has scored in four of his last 10 games in all competitions. Multiple goals in a game don’t matter here, as the anytime goalscorer market is just asking whether a particular player will score in the game, not how many he will score. So Mane has scored in every 2.5 games, and the odds offered on him scoring in the final are 2.4, giving you a lower return than his games per goal ratio. From strictly a numbers perspective, it’s not a value bet.
On the other end of the spectrum, Harry Kane has scored in six of his last 10 games, or every 1.67 games, and the odds offered on him scoring in the final are 2.6. On the face of it, this is a huge value bet, as you get a much bigger return than his games per goal ratio suggests you should. There are, however, variables to take into account, chief among them that Kane has been out injured since early April. There is a chance that he might not even play in the final, and if he does, the injury could disrupt his form. The numbers alone suggest this is a bet that can’t be missed, but the player’s status makes it a bit more of a gamble.
Instead, Mo Salah presents a safer option. He is almost certain to start in the final, despite the head injury he received in the game against Newcastle in early May. He scores every two games, and the odds offered on him bagging one against Spurs currently sit at 2.4, providing a good bit of value. It’s not the attention-grabbing bet that Kane offers, but it’s much less risky, considering Salah’s expected fitness for the final.
A note on some of the other players: Lucas Moura has also scored six goals in 10 matches, but with two hat-tricks, his goals came in only two of those 10 games, so his inconsistency doesn’t offer much value in the anytime goalscorer market. Don’t let Divock Origi’s heroic effort in the semi-final distract you from the fact that he has also only scored in two of his last 10; the odds on him scoring in the final are undoubtedly shortened by his performance against Barcelona. Roberto Firmino is in a similar situation to Harry Kane; he has been out injured, but the odds on him scoring do offer some value, so could be worth a look if he starts over Origi.
In the English Premier League (EPL), Liverpool either led or drew at half-time in their last 14 games, and across the course of the season went into half-time as the losing team on only three occasions. None of those were against Spurs, whom they led at half-time and full-time in both of the matches they contested in the 2018/2019 domestic season. The odds on Spurs coming from behind at half-time to beat Liverpool after 90 minutes are appropriately long as a result, at 25/1.
The table below shows Liverpool’s half-time/full-time results over the course of the last Premier League season, what this works out as a percentage, as a decimal, and how it compares to the odds you can get on that result in the Champions League Final:
|HT/FT Result||Matches||% of Total||Games per Result||Odds Offered|
There’s only one bet to place here: Liverpool to be leading at half-time and at full-time. As the table shows, they did this at a rate of every 1.81 matches, more than half of all the 38 games played over the course of the season. You can currently get odds of 2.65 for them to do so against Spurs, offering some great value. This one is a no-brainer: Liverpool’s attacking style means they often get ahead early, and their defence, led by the towering Virgil van Dijk, means they usually stay ahead. In fact, there was not one instance in the EPL in 2018/2019 of Liverpool leading at half-time and then going on to draw or lose.
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The value offered by Harry Kane scoring at any time seems like too good an opportunity to miss, but there are still doubts at the time of writing that he will even play. It’s likely that the odds on him scoring will shorten if it’s announced that he will be in the starting lineup, but at the moment you will need to take a bit of a gamble if you want good odds on him.
To play it safer, stick with Liverpool/Liverpool in the half-time/full-time market. If Harry Kane does end up missing the final, this is an even more attractive bet, as Fernando Llorente’s form has not been great since he stepped into Kane’s boots up front for Spurs. Tottenham have had to rely on players like Lucas Moura and Son Heung-Min attacking from deeper positions, but they are likely to struggle against a solid Liverpool back-four with Fabinho sat in front of it.