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Europa League Tips: Thursday 25th October
by David Lenton
Last time out in the Europa League, we absolutely killed it, and I’m hoping that my strategy of mostly sticking to the British teams will see us right again this time around.
The four British teams are in action once again and I am going to focus on three of them for this set of tips (Arsenal, Celtic and Rangers) as the odds-on Chelsea’s clash with BATE Borisov are so poor that I don’t think they offer a punter any real value whatsoever.
Here’s hoping that this quartet of tips proves to be as profitable as the last batch of games from the Europa League.
Europa League Betting Tips: Thursday 25th October
October 25, 2018
Red Bull Arena
October 25, 2018
Red Bull Arena
Red Bull lost their opening game to Red Bull Salzburg in Austria 3-2, but bounced back well to earn a 3-1 victory away to Rosenborg in their second game.
Celtic began with a 1-0 win over Rosenborg at Celtic Park, but they were well beaten last time out by Group leaders Red Bull Salzburg, losing 3-1 in Austria.
With Salzburg likely to pick up at least four points against Rosenborg, the outcome of these next two games will likely decide who joins the Austrian team in the knockout phase.
The two teams have never met before in European competition. Leipzig have been the stronger performing team in European competition in most recent seasons.
This is going to be a real test for Brendan Rodgers men against a Leipzig side that were playing Champions League football at this stage last season. The German’s haven’t started their season particularly well domestically and they were well beaten by Salzburg in the opener but they recovered well to easily beat Rosenborg in Norway last time out.
In contrast, Celtic’s narrow win over Rosenborg was compounded by a 3-1 defeat in Austria to Salzburg and I feel that this tends to show the gulf in quality between Celtic and the teams that are expected to reach the latter stages of this competition, of which I feel Red Bull Leipzig are certainly one.
I’d have more belief Celtic could win this game if it was being played in Scotland, as it will be in a couple of weeks, but in Germany, with Celtic’s form being what it is domestically too, I can only see one winner here and that is the home side.
I do feel Celtic will grab a goal against a Leipzig defence which has proven leaky this season but the German’s will grab enough goals the other way to secure the win.
Leipzig to win & both teams to score - £10 returns £28.50
Sporting have started their Europa League campaign well, winning their opening two games, beating Vorskla 2-1 last time out as well as a 2-0 home win over Qarabag.
Arsenal top Group E on goal difference having racked up a 4-2 win over Vorskla at the Emirates, followed by a fine 3-0 away win over Qarabag in Azerbaijan.
In past years, Arsene Wenger has selected under-strength teams for this stage of the Europa League. However, Unai Emery has selected full-strength teams this season.
The teams have met just twice in the 1969 Fairs Cup (now Europa League), with the first game a 0-0 draw in Lisbon, followed by a 3-0 win for Arsenal in London a month later.
Unai Emery’s arrival at Arsenal has heralded a change of approach to the Europa League. Arsene Wenger used to play reserve and youth team players in these games, Emery has gone full strength and the result has been much stronger and better performances from the Gunners so far.
Sporting though are no mugs and despite losing several top players last season, they have begun the group equally as well, winning both their matches too. In truth, these two teams will, barring a complete collapse, qualify for the last 32 in the New Year and these two games will simply decide who finishes top and who comes second.
For me, Arsenal are the pick here. They are looking excellent in attack at the moment with Lacazette and Aubameyang in amongst the goals and looking very dangerous when they counter. Sporting will be their toughest test, but I think the Gunners hitting them on the counter will be a real danger here.
The draw seems to be the call for most people, but I strongly feel Arsenal are the team that are going to get the job done here and I’m backing them to win despite conceding a goal going the other way.
Arsenal to win & both teams to score - £10 returns £46.00
Both teams trail Frankfurt in Group H, Lazio with three points from their two games, while Marseille have just one point from their two matches.
Lazio defeated Apollon 2-1 on the opening night of games but were then thumped 4-1 by Eintracht Frankfurt in Germany on the second Matchday.
Marseille went down 2-1 to Eintracht at home on the opening matchday but then earned a solid point with a 2-2 draw away to Apollon Limassol last time out.
The teams have met just twice previously, in the 2005 Intertoto Cup, the games finishing in a 1-1 draw in Rome, followed by a 3-0 victory for Marseille in France.
This is an interesting match up as Lazio tend not to travel well in Europe, especially to France where they have a poor record, while Marseille are generally very strong at home, especially in European competition where they have claimed some big scalps in previous years.
However, in this year’s Europa League, Marseille have struggled, losing at home Eintracht Frankfurt and then only managing a draw against Apollon Limassol, the undeniably weakest team in Group H.
Lazio though have hardly fared much better, defearing Apollon narrowly but the Italian side were them thumped 4-1 by Frankfurt in Germany which puts them under pressure to pick up at least a draw from this game.
In truth, that is how I see this game going. Marseille’s start to the season has been poor and while Lazio have not shone in Europe, they have done ok in Serie A so far and as such, I am backing the Italians to claim what could be a vital point here.
Rangers have surprised many to sit at the top of Group G, after earning a 2-2 draw away to Villarreal followed by a 3-1 win over Rapid Vienna.
Spartak Moscow began with a 2-0 defeat away to Rapid Vienna and then earned a point in an exciting 3-3 home draw with Villarreal in Russia.
A win for Rangers would put them in control of Group G after three games and give Steven Gerrard’s men a real chance of making the knockout phase of the tournament.
The two teams have never met previously in European competition.
I’ve been surprised by how well Rangers have done in this competition so far. I expected them to lose in Spain but they battled to a deserved point and then produced a fine late comeback to claim a great win over Rapid Vienna, allowing them to top the Group after two games.
Moscow have had the opposite story, losing in Austria to Rapid Vienna and then earning a 3-3 draw against Villarreal in an exciting game on the last Matchday. They are a tricky side and won’t be an easy task for Rangers over the two matches in the next fortnight.
However, with home advantage and the confidence of having two very positive results against teams that Moscow have failed to beat, I think Rangers will be looking for another win here and while I think Moscow will find the net themselves against a somewhat limited Rangers back line, I also feel the home side will grab a couple of goals to take the win.
Rangers to win & both teams to score - £10 returns £43.30
David 'the Cheeky Punter' Lenton is an ex professional online sports bettor and trader with over 15 years of experience in the industry. He has also worked for a number of top bookmakers including Bet365, Ladbrokes, William Hill and Coral. With such a long time spent dedicated to the gambling industry no one is better placed when it comes to advising punters. Follow on Twitter @thecheekypunter