Sports betting: United can supplant Juve as favourites

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The Independent Online
JUVENTUS, WHO struggled to qualify for the knock-out stages, are only mid-table in Serie A and have lost Alessandro Del Piero, their brilliant playmaker-striker for the season, are favourites for the European Cup by virtue of having drawn Olympiakos, the outsiders, in the quarter-finals.

With a training regime designed to bring their squad to peak fitness only in the new year and, free to dip into the transfer market at that point, the side that won the 1996 European Cup and should have accounted for the inferior Borussia Dortmund and Real Madrid in 1997 and this year, should make the semi-finals.

However, unless Juventus have found their stride both domestically and in Europe by that point, the favourites by the semi-final stage will be the winners of the Manchester United v Internazionale tie which, worryingly for Red Devils fans, may pitch Ronaldo against Jaap Stam.

Bayern Munich will be fancied to beat Kaiserslautern, their Bundesliga compatriots but Real Madrid, the holders, are no certainties to overcome Dynamo Kiev, although the Ukrainian outfit may be handicapped by playing the tie during their close season.

EUROPEAN CUP

C H L S T

Juventus 10-3 5-2 7-2 10-3 11-4

Internazionale 4-1 5-1 9-2 9-2 4-1

Man United 9-2 4-1 5-1 4-1 4-1

Bayern Munich 5-1 4-1 4-1 9-2 11-2

Real Madrid 4-1 6-1 4-1 5-1 5-1

Dynamo Kiev 9-1 8-1 9-1 8-1 8-1

Kaiserslautern 12-1 20-1 12-1 14-1 14-1

Olympiakos 28-1 40-1 25-1 28-1 33-1

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