Real Madrid - Braga predictions and free betting tips [08/11/2023]
On Wednesday, 8th November, as part of the 4th round of the Champions League group stage, Real Madrid will host Braga on their home field. Currently, the 'Los Blancos' have secured three victories out of three in the continental championship and have practically guaranteed their progress to the playoffs, while the Portuguese club is only third with three points.
Real Madrid: Kepa; Carvajal, Rudiger, Alaba, Mendy; Valverde, Camavinga, Kroos; Rodrigo, Joselu, Vinicius.
Braga: Mateus; Mendes, Fonte, Niakate, Borja; Al Musrati, Zalazar; Djaló, R. Orta, Bruma; Banza.
The clash will take place in Madrid at the Santiago Bernabeu Stadium.
Real Madrid continues to dominate in the Champions League, achieving a perfect result in the group by winning three in three rounds. Hard-fought victory over Union Berlin (1:0) and two away wins over Napoli (3:2) and Braga two weeks ago (2:1) were not attractive in terms of brilliant play, but yielded results. Don Carlo Ancelotti's system worked, and despite criticism, Madrid occupies the second place in the La Liga table, trailing Girona by two points, largely due to a victory in the Clasico (2:1) thanks to a brace from Jude Bellingham, potentially the best player in the world at the moment. However, on Sunday evening at Bernabeu, the 'whites' were unable to crack Rayo Vallecano's defence (0:0). Ancelotti's wards made 22 strikes at the opponent's goal and possessed the ball 63% of the time, but the implementation failed.
Overall, the hosts have avoided defeats in each of their last eight home Champions League matches, winning seven of them. The Madridistas have gotten used to the absence of Thibaut Courtois due to a torn knee ligament, as well as Eder Militao, who suffered the same injury at the start of the season. Another piece of bad news for Real Madrid: the club lost key midfielder Aurelien Tchouameni (in the match against Barça), who will be out for the upcoming three-four weeks. Ferland Mendy and Ceballos are also unavailable for various reasons (both missed the championship match against Rayo). The top scorer in La Liga with a whopping 10 goals, Jude Bellingham, who was recently awarded the KOPA trophy (best player in the world under 21) at the Golden Ball ceremony, dislocated his shoulder as a result of a fall in the Sunday match, and his participation is under question. But the sure starters will be Vinicius and Rodrigo, as well as seasoned Kroos and Alaba.
Braga could not overcome the Madrid giants on their home field (1:2). However, not all is lost for the Portuguese, who with three points continue the fight for qualification – even grabbing an away victory over Union Berlin in early October (3:2). In general, during the draw, the visitors did not consider themselves favourites in their group, which also included Real Madrid and reigning Italian champion Napoli. In the Portuguese championship this past weekend, the 'Archbishops' faced Portimonense, trying to put an end to their streak of three matches without a win in all competitions, and did so, literally destroying the rival (6:1) thanks to a hat-trick from Simão Banza. This season, the 'Archbishops' have not lost on the road and have scored at least twice in each of their last four away matches.
Víctor Gómez (defender), a key player in the Portuguese team, recovered from injury this past weekend and therefore will be ready to travel to Madrid. The team's infirmary is empty, because Bruma (4 goals, 5 assists last season) returned to the squad in the League Cup match against Casa Pia. Therefore, the Braga lineup should include experienced Ricardo Orta (6 goals, 2 assists), striker Simão Banza (10 goals in the championship, top scorer in the country and hat-trick author this past weekend), as well as Djaló (4 goals, 3 assists in 10 championship matches) or experienced José Fonte with Roni Lopes.
The first match in the history of these teams took place 2 weeks ago in Braga, and then the Madrid team prevailed with a score of 2-1.
Match Prediction: Real Madrid - Braga
If you exclude the defeat from Atletico at Wanda Metropolitano, the whites outperform their rivals in many metrics in each match. Given that a victory on Wednesday will allow the Madrid team to secure progress to the playoffs, the hosts are unlikely to force events and will begin to methodically dissolve the red-and-white defence. The visitors significantly lag behind Real Madrid in class, however, they put up worthy resistance to the favourite on their home field. I do not anticipate a landslide here and will bet on the Portuguese handicap + 2.
The main hero of Real Madrid at the start of the season, Bellingham, got injured on Sunday. Without him, Madrid looks somewhat duller in attack, so I'll bet on the individual total of the hosts' goals under 2.5.