Thursday evening brings the resumption of this season’s Europa League and the action is really heating up as we enter the knockout stages. After another BTTS treble winner on Tuesday night confidence is high and we’ll be looking to follow up with another tasty winner.
All 32 teams will be hoping for big performances on Thursday and we’re backing these three first-leg matches to end with both teams on the scoresheet. If our predictions are right then we’ll be walking away with a 4/1 winner at Ladbrokes.
Young Boys V Everton
Roberto Martinez’s men have endured a difficult campaign domestically, but things could have scarcely gone better during their run to the Europa League knockouts. We’re backing the Toffees to taste sweet success against Swiss side Young Boys for a place in the last 16.
The Premier League side netted an impressive 10 goals from six group stage matches and it is also worth remembering they’d already qualified before losing that final match to Krasnodar 1-0. Excluding that match, it’s two goals per game and there is no reason to think the likes of Romelu Lukaku and Kevin Mirallas can’t turn the heat up at the Wankdorf Stadium.
Young Boys, though, have proven themselves to be a fairly decent side and will be eager to take advantage of Everton’s vulnerable defence. You feel that only a win would give the Swiss side any chance of progressing, as they are likely to be under immense pressure at Goodison Park next week and that should force Ulrich Forte’s men into taking an attacking approach.
A score draw wouldn’t surprise us at all.
BTTS Yes @ 4/5 with Ladbrokes
Anderlecht V Dinamo Moscow
Anderlecht will have considered themselves unlucky to have drawn Arsenal and Dortmund in the Champions League, and will be hoping to enjoy a much better run now that they’ve dropped into the Europa League. However, they face a particularly difficult first test in Dinamo Moscow.
The Russians won all six of their group games and will have no qualms about facing the Belgians. They might not be the most frequent scorers, but there is no reason to think they won’t find the target in this crucial first-leg encounter.
On the other hand, Anderlecht have also proven their credentials this term with goals against Galatasaray, Arsenal and Dortmund so Besnik Has’s men should have no trouble finding the net on home soil.
With a trip to Moscow waiting, it is vital that the Belgians score. Nonetheless, Dinamo will be equally confident heading to Brussels. Expect a fascinating affair.
BTTS Yes @ 5/6 with Ladbrokes
Villarreal V Red Bull Salzburg
Spanish club Villarreal have to be considered as genuine contenders for the Europa League crown but musts first overcome a tricky tie against Austrian champions Salzburg.
Whilst the visitors are unlikely to win the competition, they’ve shown that they are more than capable of finding the net over the past two seasons and will be confident after hitting an incredible 21 goals en route to topping Group D. In particular, strikers Jonathan Soriano and Alan will pose a genuine threat as long as the chances are created.
However, this is a real step up in class and Marcelino’s men will rightly be considered huge favourites at the Camp El Madrigo. Nevertheless, confidence could be low after losing back-to-back domestic fixtures and that could afford Salzburg a sniff.
We fancy Villarreal to win this clash but do think Salzburg will grab an away goal. Back both teams to score.
BTTS Yes @ 8/13 with Ladbrokes
A £10 treble pays £53.31 with Ladbrokes[mini_post_list thumb=”smaller” meta=”show” numberposts=”4″ orderby=”date” order=”DESC”]