Classic soccer powers collide in a new locale for the title of Kings of Europe. Madrid are going for the first repeat title in Champions League history, while Juventus are going for the first treble in club history and a final trophy for their revered keeper. Despite not having lost in Champions League play this season, Juventus are a slight underdog for Saturday’s showdown.
Here are the latest odds from Bovada:
Real Madrid vs. Juventus Odds
Spread: Juventus PK (+105), Real Madrid PK (-125)
Moneyline: Juventus +195, Real Madrid +150, Draw +220
Total: Over 2 (-145), Under 2 (+120)
Cristiano Ronaldo has been on a tear leading up to the final, but he may not have the same success against the vaunted defense of the Italians. Juventus allowed just one goal in the knockout stage in this competition, a stage in which they never trailed. Juventus cruised in the spring to a sixth straight Serie A title, a Coppa Italia win, and knockout wins over Barcelona and Monaco. Now there are two milestones at stake: the first treble in club history, and a first Champions League trophy for Gianluigi Buffon.
Juventus has developed a reputation as a defensive powerhouse, but they are as balanced as any team in Europe. Saturday could be the global coming out party for Paulo Dybala, who has been brilliant in front of goal this season. The total is set at two goals for this matchup, but at -145 the over doesn’t come cheap. I reject the notion that the first goal will decide this matchup, and believe that the over is still a solid bet despite the price.
Madrid are confident heading to Wales, but they should be. Ever since Zinedine Zidane took over in late 2015, Madrid have looked worthy of being the first team to win consecutive Champions League titles. Regardless of who starts in the Isco/Bale debate, Madrid are the more dangerous side. Then there’s Ronaldo. With 10 goals to his name in this competition, Ronaldo is well-rested and ready for a return to the world’s biggest stage.
As much as I’d like to see Buffon win, Madrid are the more complete side. Expect a show from the best teams on the planet, with a late Ramos or Ronaldo goal deciding Europe for Los Blancos.
Prediction: Madrid win 3-1
Best Bet: Over 2 goals (-145) or Madrid to lift the trophy -120)