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Today’s Match Preview; Arsenal look to overturn loss as they host Bate, while Napoli and Villarreal look to hold onto their advantage as they play host to Zurich and Sporting CP respectively

Filed in MATCH PREVIEWS by on 4 weeks ago 0 Comments

Europe – Europa league

Arsenal – Bate Borisov

Unai Emery’s Arsenal didn’t have their game go quite as planned last week. They did start the contest looking the brighter of both sides although they were quite wasteful with their chances. Their defense was just as poor once again. For the return leg they would be pleased to be playing at the Emirates with just a goal deficit.

Arsenal had a relatively good performance in the first leg and it’s quite fair to say they were unlucky. Playing in hostile environment and on a relatively tough surface, they deserved a draw for the chances they created.

For Bate to make it to the next round, their best plan would be to sit back in defense. They did restrict Arsenal to just a few chances last week and could repeat the feat here. However, considering how the fared against London teams on the road it would be a surprise if Arsenal doesn’t win this one.
A general review of last week’s encounter suggests that the Gunners should have come away with a narrow win. They have a chance to do so in this encounter when Bate visit.

PICK

Home win and under 3.5 goals

Napoli – Zurich

The visitors had everything but luck in their corner last week. They created more chances than the scoreline suggests and ought to be heading to Italy with their heads held high. However, just like we’ve seen in many games they were unable to turn good spells of possession into goals. It’s likely that they have thrown away their chances as they haven’t really been impressive away from home.
Zurich struggled to impose themselves on the road on away fixtures during the group stages.

The home side made sure to expel Zurich’s hopes of making it to the next round as they better their opponents. The first half of last week’s encounter showed just how much pressure Napoli can bring forth. And they return to home turf with a 1-3 scoreline in their favour.

With 3 goals already in the bag Napoli would be looking to kill off the game in this encounter.
It’s difficult to see a way back into this encounter for Zurich. This is because with a 2 goal caution, Napoli can sitback withstand pressure and counter on the break.

PICK

OVER 2.5 Goals

Villarreal – Sporting CP

Villarreal seem to be struggling on a domestic level but they have been quite impressive on a continental level. Their win away from home continues this trend as they deleted Sporting in the reverse fixture last week. This means the Yellow Submarine take a goal advantage into the second leg which will be played in their own backyard. Villarreal are favorites to make it to the next round and if that is to change, Sporting CP would just have to be magical.

Over the weekend, the visitors recorded a moral boosting win over rivals Brags in the domestic league. This game is expected to have a tight bearing to it and the goal expectancy is quite low. The host have seen 3 clean sheets in 3 matches and under 2.5 goals recorded in 6 recent games. And on their own turf they have lost just once in 6 matches.

PICK

UNDER 1.5 goals in 1st half

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