Sydney FC – Ulsan Hyundai:
Sydney FC are in 2nd place in the league and are in decent form with 3-1-1 on their last 5 matches. Despite labelling themselves as the biggest teams in Australia they’ve never really seen much success in ACL, and have only managed to get past the group stage on one occasion which was back in 2016. On their last 10 ACL matches they only got a single win.
Ulsan won the ACL in 2012, but have since then not done much worth mentioning. They got past the group stage last year only to lose vs Suwon in the first knockout-stage. They are not a particular good away-team in Asia with just 1-3-5 on their last 9 matches on the road.
Australian teams usually don’t do too well vs Korean teams which we saw a good example of yesterday, but I still fancy Sydney here for the win. I think we could see goals too.
Prediction: 2-1 or 2-2
There’s been a move on Ulsan (probably after Daegu’s match yesterday) so Sydney DNB @ 2,06 (10 units) seems like a decent bet. I also like overs here, and Over 2,5 @ 1,95 (10 units) holds decent value.
Jeonbuk Motors – Beijing Guoan:
Jeonbuk won ACL in 2016 and had a good run last year too as they went out on PK’s vs Suwon in the 2nd knockout round. They got a lot of international experience and should be considered the favorite here.
Beijing hasn’t been in ACL since 2015 and only qualified by winning the cup. They haven’t really looked good for quite a while now and have failed to make it into the top 3 for 4 consecutive years. They got some good players here and there but I think as a team they will fall short against Jeonbuk in this match.
Prediction: 2-0 or 2-1
Jeonbuk have been made too big favorites here and for opening price they were -1. That have now moved to -0,75, and although I got value on Beijing I will skip any bets. The Totals are also too high, but no bets for me in this match.
Urawa Reds – Buriram FC:
Urawa have looked awful so far this season with 1 draw and 2 losses from 3 games and what’s even worse is that they have failed to score any goals. Against Consadole Sapporo last round they were completely outplayed at home and lost 0-2, and they were lucky to not lose by a bigger margin.
ACL is a different beast though and this could be a good chance for them to get back on track. Buriram is not an easy opponent though, and they got past the group stage last year but they shouldn’t normally have a chance vs Urawa. Especially not away, and Buriram’s away record in ACL is quite poor with just 3 wins overall from 19 matches. Urawa on the o ther hand, have 10-1-0 on their last 11 home-matches in ACL.
Prediction: 2-0 or 3-1
The odds on both the HCP and Totals looks more or less correct.
Shanghai SIPG – Kawasaki Frontale:
This is the most interesting match this round between arguably the 2 best teams in Asia. They also met last year, and then SIPG won 1-0 away while it ended 1-1 in China.
The biq question is how much effort Kawasaki will put into ACL this year, as they normally haven’t been taking it too seriously. Last year for example, they failed to win any of their group stage matches. The predicted lineup for this match is relatively good, but they are expected to rest Leandro Damiao, Hiroyuki Abe and Kengo Nakamura so it’s definitely not going to be their full-strength squad.
That alone means Shanghai should be considered favorites here, and if we add the fact that they are unbeaten at home in ACL they will probably be heavily favoured by the bookies. But the loss of key striker Wu Lei from last season is a blow, and their Brazilian FWs Hulk and Elkeson are not getting any younger so I’m not totally convinced they will win this one.
Prediction: 2-1 or 2-0
There’s been a heavy move on Kawasaki from (+0,75 to +0,25) so for me there’s now good value on Shanghai -0,25 @ 1,82 (10 units). There’s also been a move on Under, but I still find decent value there at Under 2,75 @ 1,83 (10 units).