Real Madrid, Man United and Lionel Messi all discussed in Sport360’s UEFA Champions League 2017/18 predictions

Ahead of the start of the 2017-18 UEFA Champions League, Sport360 writers share their predictions for the competition.

Sport360 staff
by Sport360 staff
11th September 2017

article:11th September 2017

Champions League football returns this week (September 12).
Champions League football returns this week (September 12).

Our Sport360 team place their reputations on the line and make 2017-18 UEFA Champions League predictions, including – winners, surprise package, flops and top goalscorer.

Who do you see claiming glory next May?


And who will flatter to deceive?

Get in touch!

Share your thoughts via Twitter and Facebook.

STUART APPLEBY

Winners: Real Madrid. They have the experience and talent to land a third-consecutive title.
Dark horses: Napoli. Quality-ridden up front, Maurizio Sarri’s men can upset anyone.
Flops: Liverpool. Likely to struggle defensively against Europe’s best sides.
Top scorer: Antoine Griezmann. Diego Simeone’s men always go far.

Real Madrid's defender Sergio Ramos (L) smiles beside the trophy celebrating the team's win from an onpen decker bus on Plaza Cibeles in Madrid on June 4, 2017 after the UEFA Champions League football match final Juventus vs Real Madrid CF held at the National Stadium of Wales in Cardiff on June 3, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / OSCAR DEL POZO (Photo credit should read OSCAR DEL POZO/AFP/Getty Images)

Will Ramos lift the trophy for a third successive time?

CHRIS BAILEY

Winners: Man City. They have not messed around this summer. Expect them to gel in time for May.
Dark Horses: RB Leipzig. With Timo Werner and Naby Keita, the debutants could surprise.
Flops: Tottenham. Another group stage exit beckons after under-investment.
Top scorer: Lionel Messi. Neymar is out of the picture and more records await.

BARCELONA, SPAIN - SEPTEMBER 09: Lionel Messi of Barcelona looks on during the La Liga match between Barcelona and Espanyol at Camp Nou on September 9, 2017 in Barcelona, Spain. (Photo by Manuel Queimadelos Alonso/Getty Images)

Always in the goals: Messi.

ALEX BROUN

Winners: It has to be either Juventus or Real Madrid and I’m going with Juve, Dybala the x-factor.
Dark Horses: Liverpool. Unlike the Premier League they still have a fear factor in Europe.
Flops: Bayern Munich. Not as strong as in previous seasons, vulnerable.
Top scorer: Neymar. After all the move drama, he’ll want to make a statement.

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 09: Jurgen Klopp of Liverpool looks on during the Premier League match between Manchester City and Liverpool at Etihad Stadium on September 9, 2017 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)

The Reds have been tipped to shine.

NIALL MCCAGUE

Winners: Real Madrid. When Ronaldo, Isco and Benzema fire, they can beat anyone.
Dark horses: Manchester United. If they can continue strong start, no reason can’t go far.
Flops: Liverpool. Have yet to demonstrate their class against big opposition.
Top scorer: Lionel Messi. The Barcelona star continues to hum with godliness.

Manchester United's English defender Chris Smalling (L), Manchester United's French striker Anthony Martial (2L), Manchester United's English midfielder Jesse Lingard (C), Manchester United's English defender Luke Shaw (2R) and Manchester United's Spanish midfielder Juan Mata attends a team training session at the club's training complex near Carrington, west of Manchester in north west England on September 11, 2017, on the eve of their UEFA Champions League Group A football match against FC Basel. / AFP PHOTO / Paul ELLIS (Photo credit should read PAUL ELLIS/AFP/Getty Images)

Man United return to the European big time.

MATT MONAGHAN

Winners: Paris Saint-Germain. Neymar, Kylian Mbappe and no other real distractions.
Dark horses: Besiktas. Have steadily built up a strong side capable of creating shocks.
Flops: Atletico Madrid. Have lost some of their lustre. Tough group beckons.
Top scorer: Mbappe. Will add many more to his brilliant six from last season.

Besiktas' new Portuguese defender Pepe smiles during his signing ceremony with the club on July 5, 2017, at the Vodafone Park stadium in Istanbul. Portuguese international defender Pepe on July 5 arrived in Istanbul to join Turkish champions Besiktas from Real Madrid on a two-year deal. According to the NTV Spor website, Pepe will receive an annual salary of 3.35 million euros ($3.8 million), plus performance bonuses, as well as a sign-on fee of three million euros. / AFP PHOTO / OZAN KOSE (Photo credit should read OZAN KOSE/AFP/Getty Images)

Besiktas have a Champions League winner in their ranks with Pepe.


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