Superclasico: Boca vs River – History will be written!


Many people consider it as the fiercest game of football ever being played. Argentina’s football world is indeed still spinning around between the two giants – Boca Juniors and River Plate.Now, it’s about to lit up the whole South America and the entire world. Final ever tie of the Copa Libertadores to be played throughout two legs – what better clash for that!


Now the prize is even more significant, so this will be Superclasico like no other… it’s going to be like Barcelona against Real Madrid, as the Los Angeles Lakers vs. Boston Celtics, like Muhammed Ali vs. Joe Frazier – a game of football that goes beyond the 90 minutes.

Boca rivera

Like plenty of the footballing rivalries, Argentine’s most significant match is all about different class. Boca is coming from the colourful but dodgy area of Buenos Aires – La Boca port area. This part of the capital is retaining a robust European flavour and centre of the radical political movement. Even though many tourists commonly visit the city, the large number of crimes around Estadio Alberto J. Armando, popularly known as La Bombonera is occurring on a daily basis. On a different note, River Plate’s nickname is Los Millonarios (The Millionaires), and historically, the richest and powerful people have always been River’s fan base.

The mega derby has been played 246 times throughout 100+ years already. Boca has the slight advantage regarding wins – 88 versus 81 River wins. The draws have been 77. While the pair have historically dominated Argentine football with 69 league titles between them (River 36, Boca 33), but they have never met in a Copa Libertadores final. It has never happened before, and it will never happen again – at least not in this format of the 2-legged fixture being the final.

Boca will host the first game on Saturday, 10. November and the second one being played on El Monumental a fortnight after. Boca reached the final for record 11th time after progressing over Palmeiras winning 4-2 on aggregate. Boca will be hoping for a win, which will be their seven tournament success.

In the other semi-final River also overcame a Brazilian side – Gremio. They have appealed against the Argentine’s side manager Marcelo Gallardo, but unsuccessfully. Gallardo may be suspended for the final, but the main point is the forthcoming final.

The tournament itself is the equivalent of the UEFA Champions League, and it’s organised since 1960. Featuring teams from across the continent, with Brazil and Argentina’s representatives dominating the past winner’s list. Mexican organisations have also been invited to compete.

Argentine side Independiente is the most successful in the competition’s history with seven titles, while Boca is close behind with six. Uruguay’s Penarol has won five times, and Argentina’s Estudiantes follow with four triumphs. Paraguayan outfit Olimpia have won the Copa three times, as have Nacional (Uruguay), River (Argentina), Sao Paulo, Gremio and Santos (all Brazil).


Twenty-five champions have come from Argentina and 18 from Brazil, with Uruguay providing eight winners. The remaining champions hail from Colombia, Paraguay, Chile and Ecuador. Bolivia, Peru, Venezuela and Mexico have never had a Copa Libertadores champion so far, but this appears to be the most exciting final up to date. Batistuta, Maradonna, Pasarela and Riquelme are just a few of the most famous players to grace the Superclasico. Reinaldo Merlo from River played the most times in the derby with 42 appearances between 1969 and 1984. Silvio Marzolini is the most-capped player in the derby for Boca Juniors, playing 37 matches. The most notable all-time goalscorers are Angel Labruna for River with 16 goals and Paulo Valentim with 10 for Boca.

Who will write themselves in the history book with golden letters and could this match be as a turning point for both Argentina and South America’s football in general.


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Bayern in crisis – what we know so far?


Why don’t Bayern Munich look so scary anymore? How come the six consecutive title winning-sides look so beatable at the moment at the start of the new Bundesliga season?

After four games without a victory in the new season, the team is considered to be in some crisis, because the giants have set the standard very high over the years. New manager Niko Kovac is already feeling the pressure of having the bigger club mentalityover his shoulders – everyone has an opinion who should play, how the rotation must be done, do the old dogs must be in the squad and many more.


He took over during the summer after guiding his former club Eintracht Frankfurt to a German Cup win against his future employers.

Bayern Munich President Uli Hoeness kept a close eye on last week’s training sessions, and Bild described how Kovac worked on fitness and tactics with the players who had not been away on international duty. After all international stars returned from their national teams’ duty and all eyes were on them to raise their game. And so they did – Bayern won 3-1 thanks to Lewandowski and James goals, and for the time being can relax. Of course, the nerves could soon be back on track if they fail to qualify from the UEFA Champions League group or fail to win one of their next games in the Bundesliga

bayern crisis

Bayern already trails to league leaders Borussia Dortmund and more worrying is that Armin Feh’s side looks like a team from other planet compared to the Reds. Paco Alcaser and co. are truly inspiring and BVB can be competition to Bayern and the rest of theleague. If we add Gladbach to the picture as well, we would suggest that Bayern could be in trouble in defending their title.

There are plenty of factors to analyse, with recruitment, an ageing squad and poor management all raised as reasons Bayern are struggling to live up to the levels expected of them, and we will focus on the following reasons:

  • Recruitment issues / slow starters
  • Ageing squad leaders
  • Shadows of former managers + rumours of Wenger
  • Niko Kovac – inexperienced at the highest level

Recruitment issues – despite getting Leon Goretzka from Schalke 04 on the cheap, Bayern didn’t sign any major players this summer. Arturo Vidal left, and with Xabi Alonso retiring last year, Goretzka and his teammates have to fill the gap in midfield quickly. James and Serge Gnarby can provide a spark up front, but the loss of Douglas Costa could be felt early on the season. The likes of Julian Brandt and Leon Bailey (both from Leverkusen) could be soon scouted to give Bayern some speed on the wings. Other big question – where will the goals come from if Lewandowski is out of the squad? Bayern failed to sign high-profile 20+ goals a season striker for a consecutive year, and the Pole is without alternative yet again.

Leaders Neuer, Ribery, Robben, Muller, Lewandowski are already in the developed stages of their footballing careers and won almost everything with the club. The big question is – do they have ambition enough to go and make another successful season for the Munich side. Some of them will like to test themselves at the highest level in a different league, so it won’t be surprising if either Neuer, Muller or Lewandowski end up in Spain or England.


Managerial issues – let’s face it, Bayern was managed by leading and famous names in the past years – Ancelotti, Guardiola, Heynckess are to name a few. Managers with proven track record and style of play. Now they’ve jumped to a more inexperienced choice like Niko Kovac, which deserves admiration. But is he unproven at this level and maybe is not yet up to the task of managing such a talented and ambitious squad? Arsene Wenger was already linked, Zinedine Zidane is still out of a job and the woes Joachim Loew is having at Die Mannschaft are only a few big shadows waiting over Kovac’s shoulders. Can he fight off the demons and lead Bayern to a record-breaking season full of trophies? We will soon find out.

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UEFA Champions League and Europa League – early front-runners – Round 01 & 02


After playing the first two rounds of the European top club football competitions, there are already early winners and losers. Last 3 season’s winners Real Madrid are finding it tough without Cristiano Ronaldo, debutants Hoffenheim and Crvena Zvezda Belgrade are having a difficult time at the beginning and many more exciting topics. Arsenal, Chelsea and AC Milan started perfectly in the Europa League and will be hoping to continue their impressive form and to carry on until the late stages of the competition. WhaleBets will review all of the actions from the groups, and you will have a full recap.

If you want to get familiar with the two major European cup competitions – you can check the infographics our team made or read the preview of the 2018/2019 season.

UEFA Champions League

Group A

Team P Pts
Borussia DortmundBorussia Dortmund 2 6
Real MadridClub Atlético de Madrid 2 6
MonacoAS Monaco FC 2 0
Club Brugge+Club Brugge 2 0

Borussia Dortmund and Atletico Madrid started with two wins from their opening matches leaving both Club Brugge and Monaco on the brink of elimination. The Belgian champion hardly proved a match for Atletico and had no luck in their opener against Dortmund. Cristian Pulisic late strike proved vital for the Germans. Atletico won away at Monaco and overturned an early lead to win with Diego Costa and Jimenez getting on the score sheet on the process. Next fixtures are offering Atletico v Borussia Dortmund clashes and Brugge v Monaco, so many answers on which teams will finish top and bottom could be given.



Group B

Team P Pts
BarcelonaFC Barcelona 2 6
InterFC Milano 2 6
Jong PSVPSV Eindhoven 2 0
TottenhamTottenham Hotspur FC 2 0

In this group, the biggest highlight was the Tottenham – Barcelona game at Wembley which finished 2-4 and was decided by Leo Messi’s brilliance. The talismanic Argentine forward scored twice in a thrilling win which left Spurs with two defeats. Mauricio Pochetinno’s side lost the first match late on against Inter, so they will be looking to get two wins against PSV and to hope for the better performance against both Barcelona and Internazionale in the reverse fixtures.



Group C

Team P Pts
NapoliSSC Napoli 2 4
LiverpoolLiverpool FC 2 3
Paris Saint-GermainParis Saint-Germain 2 3
FK Crvena zvezdaFK Crvena zvezda 2 1

In what appeared to be one of the most exciting groups, Napoli, PSG and Liverpool are in a real battle for only two places. Liverpool impressed and won against PSG at the start of the campaign, with Napoli drawing against Crvena Zvezda. Then PSG thrashed the Serbians in Paris thanks to Neymar’s excellent performance. Napoli won at the end against Liverpool to make sure that the three teams have all to play for till the final game of this group.



Group D

Team P Pts
FC PortoFC Porto 2 4
SchalkeFC Schalke 04 2 4
GalatasarayGalatasaray AŞ 2 3
Lokomotiv MoscowFC Lokomotiv Moskva 2 0

Porto, Schalke 04 and Galatasaray are locked in a battle to progress from this group, and after two losses Lokomotiv Moscow are a long way off. Porto and Schalke played a draw and are with 4 points and after Galatasaray thrashing 3-0 Lokomotiv Moscow, Turkey’s representative is having their chances in progressing with next game against Schalke 04 which are hardly impressive in the Bundesliga.



Group E

Team P Pts
AjaxAFC Ajax 2 4
Bayern MunichFC Bayern München 2 4
BenficaSL Benfica 2 3
AEK Athens FCAEK Athens FC 2 0

Ajax surprises everyone this campaign by topping the group after the win against AEK and drawing away at Bayern. Benfica lost at home to the German team then won against AEK Athens. Ajax clashes with Benfica will determine who will join Bayern in the next round that anything apart from 2 wins out of their matches against AEK Athens would be considered a huge shock.



Group F

Team P Pts
Olympique LyonnaisOlympique Lyonnais 2 4
Manchester CityManchester City FC 2 3
Shakhtar DonetskFC Shakhtar Donetsk 2 2
HoffenheimTSG 1899 Hoffenheim 2 1

Considerable favourites in this group Manchester City lost their opener against Lyon and were on the brink against Hoffenheim either, but managed to get a much-needed win via David Silva winning goal in Germany. Shakhtar was left with only 2 points after drawing both their games against Hoffenheim and Lyon. German debutants now will face the French side twice, and this could turn out to be hard to predict group.



Group G

Team P Pts
CSKA MoscowPFC CSKA Moskva 2 4
AS RomaAS Roma 2 3
Real MadridReal Madrid CF 2 3
Viktoria PlzenFC Viktoria Plzen 2 1

Real Madrid began life after Zidane and Ronaldo with a sound win against Roma but then failed miserably in Moscow by losing 0-1 to CSKA. Loppetegui will be having hard times if his side fails to qualify from what looks like an easy group – well at least on paper. Roma is slowly finding their form again and now must focus on their two decisive games against CSKA Moscow.



Group H

Team P Pts
JuventusJuventus 2 6
Manchester UnitedManchester United FC 2 4
ValenciaValencia CF 2 1
Young BoysBSC Young Boys 2 0

Cristiano’s return to Man United was the highlight of the draw, and it appeared that this could not happen. The Portuguese superstar was sent off during Juventus’ win away in Valencia, and his ban only meant that he could not feature against Young Boys. Later UEFA decided not to increase the ban and Ronaldo will return to Old Trafford. Valencia will be hoping to get two wins against outsiders from Switzerland and then to pray for the best against United at home and away at Juve.



UEFA Europa League

Group A

Team P Pts
BayernBayer 04 Leverkusen 2 6
ZurichFC Zurich 2 6
AEK LarnacaAEK Larnaca FC 2 0
Ludogorec RazgradPFC Ludogorets 1945 2 0

Zurich and Bayer Leverkusen are on hot track in progressing from their group after dealing with Bulgarian side Ludugorets and Cyprus’ Larnaca. Leverkusen showed great composure and scored the total of 7 goals in their two games. Zurich, on the other hand, was pragmatic and won twice by a single goal margin – both wins coming in the closing stages of their matches. If someone from Larnaca and Ludogorets would like to progress, they will have to get at least one win from their clash and then to hope for better performances.



Group B

Team P Pts
FC SalzburgFC Salzburg 2 6
CelticCeltic FC 2 3
RB LeipzigRB Leipzig 2 3
RosenborgRosenborg BK 2 0

In the battle of the Red Bull teams, Salzburg won against Leipzig and defeated Celtic as well. The Austrian side is having vast experience in the tournament and sits on leading position to qualify from this group. Celtic are gearing for final fixtures against the leaders after having mixed results in their two games – winning at home against Rosenborg and losing against Leipzig away. Rosenborg will need to improve after losing both their fixtures.



Group C

Team P Pts
KobenhavnFC Kobenhavn 2 4
Zenit Petersburg 2FC Zenit 2 4
Slavia PragueSK Slavia Praha 2 3
BordeauxFC Girondins de Bordeaux 2 0

French side Bordeaux is with 0 points after their two opening fixtures and must drastically improve over the next few matches if they want to progress from this group. Zenit is leading along with FC Copenhagen after both teams drawing in the first round. Slavia Prague is in an excellent position to qualify after having 3 points from their opening fixtures.



Group D

Team P Pts
D. ZagrebGNK Dinamo Zagreb 2 6
Spartak_TrnavaFC Spartak Trnava 2 3
FenerbahceFenerbahce SK 2 3
Anderlecht RSC Anderlecht 2 0

Anderlecht fears the worst after losing both opening games and failing to score a single goal – losing both matches against Spartak Trnava and Dinamo Zagreb. Turkish giants Fenerbahce lost heavily in the opening fixture in Zagreb but managed to get a win against Spartak Trnava in the second one. Anderlecht now is facing Fenerbahce, and many answers could be given in the doubleheader between the Belgians and the Turkish club.



Group E

Team P Pts
ArsenalArsenal FC 2 6
Sporting_Clube_de_PortugalSporting Clube de Portugal 2 6
FC_Vorskla_PoltavaFC Vorskla Poltava 2 0
QarabagFK Qarabag 2 0

In this group favourites are marching to qualification easily by winning both their games and now the tie between Arsenal and Sporting CP will decide who will potentially go out as winners and who will be as runner-up. Arsenal began their life under new manager Unai Emery brightly, and despite fielding under-strength teams, they won comfortably 4-2 and 3-0. Sporting CP also had no trouble against the likes of Vorskla and Qarabag FK, and despite a turbulent summer, they will have no problems progressing from their group.



Group F

Team P Pts
AC MilanAC Milan 2 6
BetisReal Betis Balompié 2 4
Olympiakos NicosiaOlympiacos FC 2 1
F91 DudelangeF91 Dudelange 2 0

Biggest shock contestant Dudelange could not live up the expectations and failed to register a single point from their two opening fixtures. They lost narrowly from Milan and Real Betis and are yet to play a double-tie with Greek giants Olympiakos. Milan overturned a deficit from the Greeks and won 3-1 at the San Siro. Betis and Olympiacos are going to be battling it out for the second spot, knowing that most probably AC Milan will occupy the top place at the end of the group campaign.



Group G

Team P Pts
Rangers FC 2 4
Rapid_WienSK Rapid Vienna 2 3
Villarreal CFVillarreal CF 2 2
Spartak_MoscowFC Spartak Moskva 2 1

In an evenly matched group without real favourite for the top spot – this group appears to be unpredictable. Steven Gerrard is in his debut season and Rangers returned to Europe after a few year’s exiles, but this didn’t stop them to be on a top place – 4 points – draw against Villareal and a home win against Rapid Wien. Spartak Moscow is bottom, but they have experienced squad on disposal, so surely the fight will go down the wire in this group.



Group H

Team P Pts
Eintracht FrankfurtEintracht Frankfurt 2 6
LazioSS Lazio 2 3
ApollonApollon Limassol FC 2 1
MarseilleOlympique de Marseille 2 1

Eintracht Frankfurt won the German Cup, lost their manager to Bayern, and now are living the dream in Europe – beating Marseille away and Lazio convincingly at home. Marseille will be hoping for improvement knowing that they managed to reach the final on last year’s edition of the tournament. Eintracht is possibly qualified, but the encounter between Lazio and OM appears to be mouthwatering.



Group I

Team P Pts
BesiktasBesiktas JK 2 3
GenkKRC Genk 2 3
MalmoMalmo FF 2 3
Sarpsborg 08Sarpsborg 08 FF 2 3

If there is a real thrilling group in the tournament – it has to be this one. Four teams, all with 3 points and all to play for in the next four rounds. Surprising or not, Sarpsborg is leading the way on goal difference with the biggest shock coming from Besiktas who are finding it tight from the beginning of the year.



Group J

Team P Pts
FC_KrasnodarFC Krasnodar 2 6
Royal_Standard_de_LiegeR. Standard de Liege 2 3
SevillaSevilla FC 2 3
Akhisar_BelediyeAkhisar Belediyespor 2 0

Record breakers Sevilla won the tournament five times and certainly will be hoping to reach the later stages of the competition. The Spanish side was stunned in their away fixture in Russia by FC Krasnodar. Standard Liege are also a team to look after, but the outsiders Akhisar are unlikely to cause significant problems to anyone, and they are in trouble in the Turkish Super League too.



Group K

Team P Pts
FC AstanaFC Astana 2 4
Stade RennaisFC Rennes 2 3
Dynamo KievFC Dynamo Kyiv 2 2
JablonecFK Jablonec 2 1

In this group, Dynamo Kiyv started slowly with two draws and certainly will be hoping to gain points in their next matches. Their both games ended 2-2, so certainly both teams to score is a good option in their games. Astana won at home against Rennes and now will be hoping against the bottom of the table team Jablonec to get the valuable points which will see them trough. On the other hand, the Czech team made a comeback against Kiyv so that the momentum will be there too.



Group L

Team P Pts
ChelseaFC Chelsea 2 6
PaokPAOK FC 2 3
BateFC BATE Borisov 2 3
MOL Vidi FCVidi FC 2 0

In the final group, the other English representative Chelsea started with 100% record. The Blues from London are respecting the tournament, and Sarri fielded strong selection in both wins against PAOK and MOL Vidi. BATE Borisov is the other team in the group, and they will undoubtedly be relishing the challenge in facing one of the favourites in the tournament Chelsea in their next two games.


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Best value for the money signings – Summer 2018


After the busy summer football fans had and after all transfer windows across Europe now closed, WhaleBets team would like to offer you a quick review of the best value for the money signings. In many cases the clubs want to overspend on a player or to drag into a bidding war with another rival club, but who were the best signings your team could’ve got for a relatively smaller fee and which could turn in to a bargain.

Do not forget that you can see all completed signings from English Premier League or Spanish La Liga in our Transfers section.

1. Stefan de Vrij (Lazio Inter, free transfer)


The Dutch centre-back spent four years with Lazio and established in the capital as one of the best defenders in Serie A. Having been linked with most of the big guns from the English Premier League like Manchester United, City, Chelsea and Liverpool; he decided to stay in Italy and join the revolution of Inter Milan. The Nerazzurri added Radja Nainggolan, Lautaro Martinez and are already looking impressive at the start of the new season. It’s to be seen whether they can challenge Juventus and Cristiano Ronaldo for the title, but yes, Inter got an experienced and reliable centre defender in de Vrij. Lazio can only blame themselves for not extending the Dutchman contract earlier and lost him for no money at all.


2. André Silva (AC Milan Sevilla, loan)


The Portuguese centre-forward arrived last summer in what appeared to be a transfer revolution in AC Milan. He came as a young striker with a lot of potential and goalscoring record but failed miserably to repay the 38 million euro paid by Italians giants for him. He scored only three times during the whole season, remained on the bench most of the time, and even he didn’t make the match squad in Genarro Gattuso’s newly looking Milan side. After completing his loan move to La Liga, Silva started scoring, and he even got a hattrick in his league debut. Being at 22-years old still, the future for Sevilla and the young Portuguese striker might look bright and yet again the Andalusia side got a real transfer bargain.


3. Leon Goretzka (Schalke 04 FC Bayern, free transfer


FC Bayern continued the tradition in getting the best out of their Bundesliga competitors as they’ve gained Schalke 04’s captain over the summer. Leon Goretzka came through the youth ranks of Bochum, but joined Schalke in 2013 and played over 100 times for the north side. In 2016/2017 season he flourished on the more attacking role and scored eight goals. The big guns from Munich announced the signing of Goretzka in January and the German international signed 4-year contract on 1 July 2018. He even scored on his league debut against Stuttgart and Bayern fans will be hoping that the 23-year old playmaker could fill the gap left after Arturo Vidal’s departure. Certainly, Schalke 04’s fans will be a little disappointed with the way their favourite is gone, and it’s interesting to see how he will be treated when returning to their ground.


4. Bryan Cristante (Atalanta Roma, loan)


The newly-capped Italy international switched Atalanta for much more ambitious Roma and the chance to participate in the UEFA Champions League. Roma’s midfield is going to be a brand new looking after influential players like Nainggolan and Strootman left and now the likes of Cristante and Nzonzi would have to carry the expectations for good performances on their shoulder. Cristante would have the chance to develop and work with Danielle De Rossi – an iconic box to box midfielder for the capital city team. Given the fact that the midfielder is only 23-years old, the investment which Roma could make next summer by buying him permanently for 25 million euro could become a profitable one.


5. Joao Moutinho (Monaco Wolves, 5.00 million €)


The influential Portuguese attacking midfielder joined the Wolves revolution led by Jose Mendes and his connections across Europe. Moutinho won tons of silverware with Porto, Sporting and Monaco and certainly making the switch to Molineaux would raise a few eyebrows. He was a significant part in Portugal winning the Euros in 2016, and his name indeed is familiar to fans in the Premier League has been on the verge of joining Manchester United earlier in his career. The 32-year old playmaker already enjoyed a good partnership with Ruben Neves at the heart of Wolves midfield and will be crucial for Nuno Espirito Santo’s plans to transform the Midlands club into a real hit in the English Premier League.

Want to check all transfers, head to our Transfers section, and you will be able to track all completed deals per club and league. Follow WhaleBets Blog section and other exciting analysis will come your way on a weekly basis.

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UEFA Europa League 2018-2019 – Preview

UEFA Europa League - 2018-2019 Preview

The second-best European tournament is back on, and excitement is building around all clubs participating. Looking forward to the group stage draw, teams from the bigger leagues will value to the tournament as the route to the Champions League, as the winners are granted participation in the group stage of the most luxurious competition.


When it’s the draw?

UEFA Europa League - 2018-2019 Preview - When it’s the draw

The draw will take place on Friday, August 31 in Monaco.


What are the rules of the tournament?

12 groups with four teams, top 2 teams qualify for the Round of 32. 8 3rd place teams from the group stage of UEFA Champions League are entering the Round of 32 stage.

Groups to be determined.


What is the prize money?

  • Preliminary round: €220,000
  • First qualifying round: €240,000
  • Second qualifying round: €260,000
  • Third qualifying round: €280,000
  • Play-off round elimination: €300,000
  • Base fee for group stage: €2,920,000
  • Group match victory: €570,000
  • Group match draw: €190,000
  • Group winners: €1,000,000
  • Group runners-up: €500,000
  • Round of 32: €500,000
  • Round of 16: €1,100,000
  • Quarter-finals: €1,500,000
  • Semi-finals: €2,400,000
  • Losing finalist: €4,500,000
  • Winners: €8,500,000


Where will the final take place?

UEFA Europa League - 2018-2019 Preview - Where will the final hold

This years’ final is going to take place on the 29 May 2019 at the Olympic Stadium in Baku, Azerbaijan. The venue is a 68,700-seat stadium, opened in March 2015 and the construction is a 225,000-square-meter stadium on a 650,000-square-meter site. The six-story, 65.7-meter structure is situated near Boyukshor Lake, in the Azerbaijan capital. In June 2015 the stadium served as the main venue for the European Games, hosting the opening and closing ceremonies, and the athletic games. Qarabag played last year’s matches from their UEFA Champions League group stage at the stadium.


Key dates

  • September 20th: Group stage, matchday one
  • October 4th: Group stage, matchday two
  • October 25th: Group stage, matchday three
  • November 8th: Group stage, matchday four
  • November 29th: Group stage, matchday five
  • December 13th: Group stage, matchday six
  • February 14th: Round of 32, first leg
  • February 21st: Round of 32-second leg
  • March 7th: Round of 16, first leg
  • March 14th: Round of 16, second leg
  • April 11th: Quarterfinals, first leg
  • April 18th: Quarterfinals, second leg
  • May 2nd: Semifinals, first leg
  • May 9th: Semifinals, second leg
  • May 29th: Final, in Baku’s Olympic Stadium


Teams to watch

Chelsea Chelsea


The Blues from London are Maurizio Sarri’s first season and started well in the League, so they will be hoping to replicate their excellent form in Europe too. Sarri’s record with previous club Napoli in Europe is not the best ever, and the ever-present competition in the English Premierleague give the opportunity to qualify to Europe’s most exceptional tournament via a different route. The Blues already have a history in winning the trophy under Rafael Benitez. The likes of Eden Hazard, William, Jorginho and co. will be hoping for reaching the later stages of the tournament at least.


Arsenal Arsenal


Unai Emery is proven on this level, have an excellent reputation in the competition and will be hoping for the same success with his new employees. The Gunners had mixed start of the season, and early pre-season managed to bolster their defence and midfield but losing on a few primary transfer targets. Last season was the debut season in the competition for Arsenal, and the London side went out at the Semi-finals at the hands of the potential winners Atletico Madrid. Emery and his men will be looking at least of reaching the later stages of the Knockout phase.


AC Milan AC Milan

AC Milan

New season, new expectations and new big name on the squad sheet – the story of AC Milan every summer. The 7-time Champions League winners are on their way to restore club’s elite status after several years of mediocrity in Seria A and Europe. Long ago are the days in which the Rossoneri were capable of attracting the best players and competed against top sides. After a play-swap plus cash deal, Gonzalo Higuain joined from Juventus, and Leonardo Bonucci moved in the opposite direction. For most Milan fans it will be more crucial how their team is going to perform in the local league, than performing at some level in the Europa League. Reaching the knockout stages should be a must though.


Sevilla Sevilla


Europa League’s most successful team is always on the lookout to win their favourite competition. They have won this Cup 5 times and will be looking to earn even more glory. Last year’s landmark performance was when Manchester United was eliminated in the Champions League, so a good run in UEFA Europa League is on the cards for the Andalusia side. The disappointment from last season performance in La Liga must be erased fast, and Pablo Machin has a tough task after joining from Girona in May replacing Vincenzo Montella.


Follow our Free Daily Tips section to get exclusive predictions on UEFA Europa League on each round and let’s bust the bookies together!

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UEFA Champions League – 2018-2019 Preview

UEFA Champions League - 2018-2019 Preview

The most exciting European football tournament is nearly upon us. The group stages will be drawn, and club fans will start planning their trips across the continent or to evaluate their team’s chances to progress to the Knockout stages. Real Madrid won it three times in a row, but now Cristiano Ronaldo and Zinedine Zidane moved on, English teams spent tons of millions, Bayern and PSG have new coaches and will be looking to get a flying start of their regimes. Can Atletico finally make their mark after losing two finals or is Ronaldo, the real king of the tournament?


When it’s the draw?

The draw will take place on Thursday, August 30 in Nyon.

UEFA Champions League - 2018-2019 Preview - When it’s the draw


What are the rules of the tournament?

Eight groups with four teams, top 2 teams qualify for the Round of 16. 8 3rd place teams from the group stage of UEFA Champions League are entering the Round of 32 stage of the UEFA Europa League. Groups to be determined.


What is the prize money?

  • Preliminary qualifying round: €230,000
  • First qualifying round: €280,000
  • Second qualifying round: €380,000
  • Third qualifying round: €480,000 (Only for clubs eliminated from the champions path, since clubs eliminated from the league path qualify directly for the UEFA Europa League group stage and therefore benefit from its distribution system.)
  • Base fee for group stage: €15,250,000
  • Group match victory: €2,700,000
  • Group match draw: €900,000
  • Round of 16: €9,500,000
  • Quarter-finals: €10,500,000
  • Semi-finals: €12,000,000
  • Losing finalist: €15,000,000
  • Winning the Final: €19,000,000


Where will the final take place?

UEFA Champions League - 2018-2019 Preview - Where will the final hold

This years’ final is going to take place on the 01 June 2019 at the Wanda Metropolitano Stadium in Madrid, Spain. The venue is a 67,703-seat stadium, opened formerly in 1994, but renovated in 2017 is the new home of Atletico Madrid. The Community of Madrid finances the stadium situated in the Spanish capital and cost 240 million euro. Diego Simeone and his men will be hoping to go all the way and to participate in the final to play at their home venue.


Key Dates and Stadiums

  • September 18 – 19: Group stage, matchday one
  • October 2-3: Group stage, matchday two
  • October 23-24: Group stage, matchday three
  • November 6-7: Group stage, matchday four
  • November 27-28: Group stage, matchday five
  • December 11-12: Group stage, matchday six
  • February 12-13 & 19-20: Round of 16, first leg
  • March 5-6 & 12-13: Round of 16, second leg
  • April 9-10: Quarterfinals, first leg
  • April 16-17: Quarterfinals, second leg
  • April 30 – May 01: Semifinals, first leg
  • May 7-8: Semifinals, second leg
  • June 1: Final, in Madrid

The games will be played on those wonderful 32 venues across Europe with the biggest being Camp Nou in Barcelona and Wembley in London. The destinations which are most Easterns are in Moscow and most Western in Portugal.

Have a look at all of the grounds and do not forget to follow the Free Daily Tips in which you can see predictions for the UEFA Champions League throughout the whole Group stage of the tournament.


Teams to watch

Real Madrid Real Madrid

UEFA Champions League - 2018-2019 Preview - Real Madrid

Europe’s most successful team is hunting the unthinkable fourth trophy in a row, but Real’s task is going to be tough one. Cristiano Ronaldo and Zidane moved away, but new leader of the pack Gareth Bale started the season brightly. Young and hungry players like Asensio, Vazquez and the experience of Modric, Marcelo, Kroos and Ramos are certainly making Real a genuine contenders. The lack of high profile signing and a failed bid for Hazard or Harry Kane is raising doubts over the chances of the Madrid side.

Barcelona Barcelona

UEFA Champions League - 2018-2019 Preview - Barcelona

Barca is the real favourite every year and this year makes no exception. A rather quiet summer, without having any big shakedowns on the transfer market – the Catalans managed to improve in defence by signing Clement Lenglet and shipped out Yerri Mina and Andre Gomes, but added Arturo Vidal and Malcom, so Barca have a strong side which can compete at top level. Leo Messi and Luis Suarez are continuing to shine year after year, but the departure of Xavi, Iniesta will raise a few concerns. Can the Catalans finally end arch rivals dominance in the tournament?


UEFA Champions League - 2018-2019 Preview - PSG

PSG regained the Ligue 1 title after losing out to Monaco last year, and finally, their owners will be eager to make their mark in Europe. A state of intent – Neymar and Cavanni stayed put, Gianluigi Buffon arrived and added experience to the squad. Thilo Kehrer should come useful at the rotation in defence after finishing his 30 million euro move from Schalke. Thomas Tuchel has the privilege in having maybe the brightest talent on the planet in Kylian Mbappe and the player everyone is talking about after France World Cup win over the summer.

Juventus Juventus

UEFA Champions League - 2018-2019 Preview - Juventus

The Italian big guns are stronger this year after clinching yet another Serie A title. Last season was pretty hard after Napoli gave the Torino side a real fight for the crown. Cristiano Ronaldo is 33, but he is their marquee signing, and if he finds his form in Italy the opponents are in for a tough fight. Joao Cancelo and the return of Leonardo Bonucci increase Allegri’s side in defence, and the big ask is – can Bianconerri find a replacement for Buffon?

Manchester City Manchester City

UEFA Champions League - 2018-2019 Preview - Manchester City

Pep Guardiola’s City is setting the pace in English Premierleague and won the title rather easily last season. The Citizens will be hoping to finally break the drought in Europe after years of substantial investments. Riyad Mahrez was the most notable signing, but City’s squad is with a lot of position in every department. Fighting at home and abroad might come to a big ask for the team, but Guardiola is having a history in rotating his side so that won’t be a problem. Laporte and Benjamin Mendy are like new signings due to not featuring enough last term. Having said all this – can finally City go all the way in Europe and reach final?

Interested in how can make a few quid out of Champions League, take a look at our strategies and plan your way to bust the bookies? Have a look at our Strategies section.


If you need betting advice you can always count on WhaleBets.

Read our in-depth betting strategies and don’t hesitate to contact us.


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English Premier League’s most famous WAGs – season 2018-2019

English Premierleague’s most famous WAGs

The excitement of the new season is already here, the wait will be almost over, and we will be able to watch our favourite football club’s week in and week out in the new season. No matter whether you are happy with your club transfer dealing or not, you still will be hoping them to have a successful season. Before turning our attention on transfers, possible formations and style of plays though, we have a very eye-catching and pleasant subject for you – the footballers better halves.

The term WAG (women and girlfriend) was invented during England’s campaign in 2004 European championships in Switzerland and Austria. With the likes of Coleen Rooney, Alex Gerrard, Abbey Clancey, Cheryl Cole and co. Flared the fashion boutiques in Geneva and Vienna and the whole world turned their eyes on them. While their better halves starred, the Three Lions failed to deliver a major trophy yet again and disappointed their fans. The so-called Golden generation didn’t have any significant impact on the football field, but the media switched the attention to stands and focused on the glamorous, gorgeous ladies supporting their husbands or partners on the field.


So, who to look out for during 2019-2019 Premierleague season? We count down the top 10.

10. Annie Kilner – Kyle Walker

The former Tottenham right-back made a big-money to Manchester City and won the league last term with the Citizens. Born in Sheffield, Kyle Walker made his breakthrough in Sheffield United before moving to Spurs. Annie Kilner, 25, and Kyle Walker, 28, have been dating since they were both teenagers. The adorable couple has often commented on their strong relationship and the importance of family – both on social media and in the press. Annie and Kyle have three sons together: Roman, 6, Riaan, 2, and Reign, nine months. The couple is also expecting a new arrival later this year.

Annie Kilner - Kyle Walker


9. Sam Cooke – Chris Smalling

The United centre-back and the former glamour model Sam Cooke are dating for a couple of years, and we can see why. Sam shot to fame came as a glamour model in the lads’ magazines such asFRONT, Maxim, FHM, Zoo, Loaded and Nuts.

sam cooke


8. Daniella Semaan – Cesc Fabregas

The Chelsea playmaker is yet to cement his place in Maurizio Sarri’s first-team plans, but regarding partnering – he tied the know with Daniella Semaan back in May 2018 before his World Cup snub. Daniella is 12 years older than the Spaniard, and the glamorous divorcee had been dating the Chelsea star for seven years. She is a Lebanese-born mother of five, Daniella and Cesc began their love affair in 2011, and since then they’ve had three children.

daniella seemaan


7. Fern Hawkings – Harry Maguire

Harry Maguire has gone from an unknown player to a important part of England squad during the World Cup, cementing his national treasure status with a thumping header against Sweden. The Leicester defender was subject to large interest from Jose Mourinho but remained at Wes Midlands. Fern Hawkins is Harry Maguire’s fiancée and has a Bachelor’s degree in science and physiotherapy, graduating with First Class Honours in 2017. Like Harry, she’s from Sheffield, and the couple has been dating for just over seven years after getting together on June 19, 2011.

fern hawkings


6. Katie Goodland – Harry Kane

Katie just recently gave birth to the couple second child, but she looks rather stunning. Katie Goodland is a fitness instructor who has dated the England striker from 2013. She is a sports science graduate who is said to find her fiancé’s fame a little “crazy” as the Spurs striker continue to score goals for fun in the Premierleague. They met on a footballing camp in London and even have a picture of David Beckham together. Strange, isn’t it?

harry kane


5. Edurne Garcia – David De Gea

Edurne is a big star in Spain being an actress and TV presenter; she also features on the pane Spain’s Got Talent reality TV show. She rose to fame in late 2005 when she took part in the Spanish talent show, Operacion Triunfo. The blonde also represented Spain in the Eurovision Song Contest 2015 with the song Amanecer. She often sparks rumours of David returning to Madrid, but who could blame him if he wants to be more often with his partner?



4. Alexandra Ivarsdottir – Gylfi Sigurdsson

The Iceland playmaker made a big-money move from Swansea to Everton and rose to fame during the Euro 2016 where Iceland shocked the world. The Everton man got a jackpot off the field too. The small country gave us Bjork and the volcano ashes, she even won Miss Iceland in 2008 and finished in the semi-finals in a Miss World Sports competition. It is a classic school romance – as they grew up in Reykjavik together.

Alexandra Ivarsdottir - Gylfi


3. Amine Gulse – Mesut Ozil

The German playmaker had hot time during the World Cup and sparked a big debate back home when he retired from International football. Arsenal’s number 10 is from Turkish dissident and his partner is a former Miss Turkey. Amine, 25, is famous in her own right as a Swedish-Turkish actress and model. The brunette was crowned Miss World Turkey 2014 and represented her country at the Miss World 2014 pageant. She has also starred in the likes of Turkish television series. It is believed Mesut’s fiancee is based in Istanbul, Turkey for work purposes. Mesut, 29, is supposed to have first met the brunette beauty queen in 2014.

amine gulse


2. Mayte Rodriguez – Alexis Sanchez

Sanchez and Rodriguez first went public with their relationship after the Confederations Cup as the striker shared photos of their helicopter trip to his 6.6M Instagram followers. She is a TV actress and moved to Manchester to be close to his sweetheart.



1. Ruby Mae – Dele Alli

In true footballer fashion, the Tottenham midfielder’s girlfriend is a well-known model, having shot with several high-profile fashion brands.

The model is also an Instagram star, regularly updating her account with snaps of herself and beau Dele. She is also an avid dog-lover and has a black miniature poodle called Dougie, who regularly features in her snaps. Mae is signed to Manchester-based Boss Model Management and has worked for several well-known brands such as Chanel, Dolce & Gabbana, Hidden Fashion and The Couture Club.

ruby mae


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FIFA World Cup 2018: What we’ve learned

After witnessing one of the greatest World Cups ever, the WhaleBets team will focus on the main things, which happened in Russia and blew us all away. Was France “golden boys” were the deserved winners and did we saw the making of one of the greatest national sides in Deschamps’ team? Croatia stole the hearts of the neutrals, England failed to bring home the trophy yet again, this time around they’ve made their fans proud and not disappointed as the previous generation, Germany failed massively, and Leo Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo didn’t have any significant impact outside of their groups. This plus many other major talking points. Let take a look.


World Cup in numbers

169 – goals scored, 45 out of which were scored in the knockout stages

9 – minutes in which France trailed only for 9 minutes during the entire World Cup campaign, where Argentina took the lead in the Round of 16.

12 – most goals scored by players from the same club – Tottenham and Paris Saint-Germain.

4 – the number of red cards shown on the finals. The first tournament after 1986 in which the red cards are not double figures


Biggest winners

1. France – obviously when they won the Cup, they must be right on the list. Didier Deschamps’ side was one of the favourites to get the trophy but started slowly in their group matches. First game against Australia they didn’t perform that well and had to rely on a penalty and an own goal to win. Attacking display against Peru and Denmark was not good enough either. Then the knockout stages unveiled a great French side. Pavard, Mbappe, Pogba and Kante impressed, defensively Umtiti and Varane were solid and despite a minor mistake on the final Hugo Lloris was reliable at the back. Les Bleus certainly exceeded the expectations of their fans and made their president Macron proud by lifting the trophy under the Moscow rain.



2. Harry Kane – the iconic Tottenham striker won the Golden Boot with his six goals and certainly established himself as one of the most all-around strikers in the world. Many would argue that 3 out of 6 goals came penalty spot, but the Englishman and his fellow teammates impressed with their character and good-feeling among the squad. Recording the first ever penalty shootout against Colombia and winning in style against Panama would be highlights of the tournament. Talk about football coming home… well, at least for now not though.



3. Luka Modric – not that we ever doubted the Real Madrid ace, but the playmaker and his small country impressed. Winning with so much accuracy in all their group matches and the demolition of Argentina was only the beginning of the end for the South Americans. Luka Modric said that he would switch his three wins in a row in the Champions League for the chance of his country to win the World Cup. Only if, Luka, only if.



4. The overall organisation of the tournament – many feared that the stadiums would not be ready in time, that the hooligan’s fracas in Marseille will repeat, there were doubts about racism. Happily, none of the mentioned happened or appeared in any form during the entire tournament. Russians did well, and all games went under the fair play standards, and despite a few referees’ decisions that gave room for discussions, FIFA representatives must be very proud of how the tournament went.


Biggest Losers

1. Joachim Löw and Germany – the reigning champions failing to go out of the group stage is something we got familiar with, but to see the Germans do so poorly in their group was a huge surprise. Germany missed a couple of chances and were victims of the beautiful counter-attacking play from Mexico and lost their opening match, restored their chances in a dramatic win against Sweden and failed miserably in the must-win game against South Korea. Many of the selection choices and the fact that Leroy Sane was not included in the squad at all raised a few eyebrows. It’s to be seen whether Löw would be able to pick his side up after such disappointment.


2. Neymar Jr – the Brazil superstar, was racing against time to be fit for the tournament and got the whole country excited after he took the armband in leading Brazil in their group matches. Lack of game time and maybe lousy luck in the teams faced in the knockout stages led to Paris Saint-Germain star only scoring once and rolling on the floor more often than being useful to his side. He was not quick on the ball and was often caught by his opponents. Maybe a transfer is on the cards, and that is why he didn’t perform.



3. Non-European nations – on every tournament we have a team which was the real surprise package of the story, a small country with no real expectations. Costa Rica stunned everyone on the last cup, South Korea was great at World Cup 2002 and who can forget the heroics of Ghana in the South Africa tournament. This time around the teams from Africa barely was there to be seen, the traditionally strong sides from South America didn’t have a representative on the Semi-finals and Asians also were disappointing bar the brave performance of Japan.



4. Jorge Sampaoli – the Argentina manager completely lost his reputation during the World Cup 2018. He was an integral part of Chile’s rise during the last couple of years and successes, but his authority was put in doubt after the draw against Iceland, the massive loss against Croatia and the unconvincing win against Nigeria. During the only group stage victory of the Gauchos, even Leo Messi had to make the team talk during the halftime, and he was caught being asked whether Sergio Aguero must come into play in the second half. Talk about being a leader then?



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The Beauty of the World Cup 2018

The Beauty of the World Cup 2018

In an entirely men-oriented sport, football often attracts beautiful women from across the globe. We will not go into details how teams fared in the stadiums in Russia, or what odds can be expected during Round 3 of the Group stage. WhaleBets team is offering you a different look to FIFA World Cup 2018 – the beauty in the stands, those marvelous women fans who often catch the eye of the TV cameramen and who make every football fan to wish he could be in the stadium (not for the footballing reasons).


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