Did you have any angles yesterday? Real Madrid's strong scoring and conceding pattern certainly was exploitable at 1-0 down. As I thought, Atl Madrid know precisely how to strangle a match. Perhaps the Great Bard's tactics were not at their optimum for Leicester? Atl Madrid kept up their clean sheet pattern of first leg home matches. Not exploitable though.
A tough Europa League first leg set of matches. I will back 2-2 in the Celta Vigo match, as a trading angle. I do expect Man Utd to show something today. They will take a 1-1 or a 0-1 I am sure.
17:30 - Olympiakos v AEK Athens - 1.65 Oly
- AEK Athens won the last cup head to head between these 2 teams. AEK Athens won 1-0 at home on 19th February 2017.
- I think this is the first of 2 legs.
- Olympiakos have only lost 2 cup matches since January 2012, one was the above head to head match.
- 6 clean sheets in 7 matches at home for Oly in the cup but AEK beat them at home 17th May 2016.
- AEK Athens are unbeaten in 17 matches in the cup - Oly were the last team to beat them in May 2015.
- I thought there might be angles. There are not. Both teams are in excellent cup form.
19:45 - Wigan v Barnsley - 2.14 Wigan
- 0-0 the last time these 2 met in the English Championship.
- This is 23rd v 13th. Wigan desperately need points! Barnsley are treading water mid-table.
- 5 matches remain this season.
Wigan other stats
- 4 defeats in 5 matches. Beat Rotherham 3-2 last match.
- 9 0-0's at halftime at home.
- Wins at home v 12th, 15th, 22nd and 24th.
Barnsley 100% stats
- Unbeaten away v 18th and lower.
- Unbeaten home and away v 20th and lower.
Barnsley other stats
- 3 losses away ended with a win.
- Only 2 0-0's away.
- 7 1-0 losses at halftime away and 7 0-0's at halftime away.
- Clean sheets away v 18th and lower.
- Caveat - it's that time of year - desperation stakes for some teams which might lead to a result like Crotone 2 - Inter Milan 1! So mark that!
- 'On form', again in quotation marks, Barnsley tend to keep a clean sheet away v bottom sides and on that basis should not lose. The problem is that they are in limbo. Nothing to aim for and no relegation threatened.
- Wigan do not tend to win at home. Their win v a poor Rotherham was last-gasp. They will need Barnsley to 'switch off' and be in holiday mode.
20:05 - Ajax v Schalke - 2.6 Ajax
- This is the Europa League.
- Only 1 loss in 13 matches for Ajax was v Copenhagen - Ajax won the home leg over 2 leggers.
- 1-0, 1-0 Ajax in the last 2 home first leg Europa League matches.
- 3 draws and 5 wins in their 8 home matches. 4 clean sheets in 5 home matches for Ajax in the Europa League.
- 3 consecutive score draws for Schalke in the Europa League. Only 1 loss in 10 matches for Schalke in the Europa League.
- 0-0, 0-1, 0-3 for Schalke away in first leg Europa League matches. A clear tactic. Clean sheet. Nick an away goal.
- The market cannot split these teams. It seems both sides are cautiously defensively led in the Europa League. 0-0 on top for a while?
20:05 - Anderlecht v Man Utd - 2.02 Man Utd
- 5 wins and 2 losses in their last 7 Europa League matches for Anderlecht.
- 2-1; 1-0; 2-0 in Anderlecht's 3 home first leg matches.
- 8 wins and 2 defeats at home for Anderlecht in the Europa League.
- Man Utd have kept 5 clean sheets in 6 matches now in the Europa League. Only Rostov have scored against them.
- I have to favour Man Utd today based simply on an apparent motivation for them this season at least, to go far in the Europa League.
- Anderlecht will look towards clean sheets.
20:05 - Lyon v Besiktas - 1.64 Lyon
- Was Lyon's unexpected weekend loss down to Europa League distractions? It should not have been with a 5 day gap.
- Lyon were last in the Europa League in 2014. They are a remnant of the Champions League.
- In 2017, Lyon have scored 4-7-4-1 goals. That single goal came in an away match against Roma where Lyon already lead 4-2.
- Besiktas have scored and conceded in 8 of their last 9 Europa League matches, straddling 2015 and 2017.
- In their last 2 first leg aways, they won 1-3 and drew 1-1.
- Lyon are rightly favourites but were well beaten, when shorter odds than today, at home to Lorient at the weekend. As I said earlier, the hope was that result was because of this Europa League distraction.
- Besiktas might score today, but this is a step up from Olympiakos and Hapoel Be'er Sheva.
20:05 - Celta Vigo v Genk - 1.61 Celta Vigo
- A good campaign for Celta Vigo so far culminates in 3 consecutive unbeaten matches and 2 consecutive wins v Krasnador.
- The last 2 first leg home matches saw a 0-1 loss and a 2-1 win.
- Genk are not frequent visitors to the Europa League.This looks their first campaign.
- 2-2 and 2-5 in the 2 away first leg matches. Poor opponents or a real strategy by Genk to drown their opponent in away goals?
- On that basis, expect goals today? Back 2-2 pre match as a possible trading vehicle?