Thursday night sees this year’s Europa League group stage get underway. If last season’s competition is anything to go by, it’s going to mean goals, goals, goals!
Great news for the neutral, and even better news for punters on the over 2.5 match goals market. We’re looking to take advantage on matchday one with this 5/1 treble. All we need is three games in each of those selected matches and we’ll be celebrating a much welcomed weekend winner.
Ajax V Celtic. 6PM
It wasn’t long ago that Ajax v Celtic was a game you’d expect to see in the Champions League, but these two clubs have suffered a severe fall in quality meaning that they now meet in the Europa League. Nevertheless, it should still be a dramatic night at the Amsterdam ArenA.
Both teams will be expecting to progress out of Group A, and an opening night win would set the winner well on their way. This should hopefully lead to an attack-minded affair between two clubs that attack far better than they defend.
The visitors haven’t kept a clean sheet in any of their last seven matches, with six of those ending with at least three match goals. Meanwhile, both of Ajax’s last two matches have seen four goals scored.
Managers Frank de Boer and Ronny Deila will both see this as a winnable fixture. Let’s hope that results in a game of ample chances.
Over 2.5 match goals @ 21/20
Borussia Dortmund V FK Krasnodar. 6PM
If seeing Ajax and Celtic in Europa League action raises a few eyebrows, seeing Borussia Dortmund in Europe’s lesser competition is nothing short of mind-blowing. However, Thomas Tuchel will see this as a fantastic opportunity to end his first year at Signal Iduna Park with a trophy, and we’re expecting the Yellow Wall to spur its team on to a comfortable victory here.
Dortmund have been great value for money in the early weeks of the season, scoring 19 goals in just four competitive home games. Meanwhile, they’ve also conceded three times in those matches, which gives us great reason to think there will be goals.
Additionally, attacking stars Marco Reus and Pierre Emerick Aubameyang will view this Group C opener as a great chance to get amongst the goals. In truth, it would be a huge surprise if they don’t beat the Russian visitors.
Nonetheless, Oleg Kononov’s men will be eager to score a memorable goal at the home of one of Europe’s elite. Even if they don’t, there’s a good chance this selection will win.
Over 2.5 match goals @ 4/9
St Etienne V Rosenborg. 8:05PM
Our final selection comes from the Stade Geoffroy Guichard as French side St Etienne take on Rosenborg in what could be one of the more exciting games of the night.
The Ligue 1 hosts will be fancied to clinch the victory, which would be their fifth straight win in all competitions, and Christophe Galtier will be expecting a big performance from his attacking players. The likes of Romain Hamouma and Nolan Roux might not be world beaters, but they are more than capable of finding the target here.
However, the Norwegian visitors shouldn’t be dismissed altogether. Kare Ingebrigsten’s men have scored 58 goals in just 23 league matches this term, with Alexander Soderlund notching 20 league goals by himself. If the Tippeligaen club can bring that form to the Europa League, we should see plenty of action in France.
St Etienne’s last two competitive matches have ended in 2-1 victories, a repeat result would suit us just fine.
Over 2.5 match goals @ Evens
A £10 treble returns £59.20