One of the biggest days in sports has arrived once again, with the 2018-2019 UEFA Champions League final ready to kick off on Saturday night in Madrid, Spain. With close to 200 million people expected to watch the showdown — a rare, all-English matchup between Premier League sides Tottenham Hotspur and Liverpool — Saturday will likely also be one of biggest days for sports bettors as well. Although there is a clear betting favorite heading into the match, as Newsweek reports, one major decision by Tottenham Manager Mauricio Pochettino could change the entire picture for oddsmakers. Unfortunately for some, that decision may not come until too late, once the odds have been mostly locked in.
That decision involves Tottenham’s 25-year-old striker Harry Kane, who has already scored five Champions League goals — and 23 in all competitions, per Soccerway stats — before going down with an ankle injury on April 19. His injury occurred in the first leg of the Champions League quarterfinal, in which the Spurs eliminated another heavily favored side — Manchester City.
Now, after six weeks on the sidelines watching his team plow through City as well as Dutch club AFC Ajax, Kane appears ready to play in the most important game of Tottenham’s 136-year history. But will he? According to a report by Britain’s Daily Mirror, Pochettino plans to make that decision “as late as possible.”
How that delayed decision will affect betting lines remains uncertain. Four hours before the match is set to get underway, Britain’s legal sports books still have an abundance of confidence in Liverpool to lift their second UEFA Champions League trophy and first since 2005. According to online betting site Bet365, Liverpool’s odds of an outright victory stand at 4/9, meaning a bet of nine dollars would pay four dollars in profit should Liverpool take the trophy. Tottenham are heavy underdogs at 7/4.
The United States-based online betting odds aggregator Odds Shark has provided similar odds, with Liverpool installed at a minimum of -106 to a high of -135 as favorites. In other words, a bet of one dollar would pay back $1.35. But as underdogs, Spurs have low odds of +285 and high of +335 — meaning a bet of one dollar pays off $3.35.
???? Tottenham vs Liverpool – Method of Victory
⚽️ 90 minutes:
Tottenham – 10/3
Liverpool – 10/11
⏱ Extra Time:
Tottenham – 16/1
Liverpool – 17/2
Tottenham – 14/1
Liverpool – 12/1
— bet365 (@bet365) June 1, 2019
According to the gambling news site Covers.com, the Ireland-based Paddy Power betting site is offering relatively favorable +260 odds that the match will end in a draw — meaning that the Champions League title would be decided on a penalty shootout.
“Liverpool would have the bigger fanbase and have been the better team all season, so unsurprisingly, the bigger liability is on Liverpool,” Lee Price of Paddy Power told the site. “A draw tends to be an unpopular selection for casual gamblers, so that would be the best result for Paddy Power in the match.”
A list of sources to watch the Tottenham Hotspur vs. Liverpool FC UEFA Champions League final via an online live stream is available from The Inquisitr.