I will look at matches which catch my eye firstly. There are a lot of familiar names. This Europa League blows hot and cold. I can have a great live chat session one week, and then the next week it reminds me why I hate this competition so much! I will try and be online for the 18:00 kick offs at least today.
18:00 - FC Astana v Maccabi Tel Aviv - 2.22 FC Astana
- Astana are a Kazak team, and Maccabi an Israeli side.
- 3-1 loss v Villareal and 1-1 v Slavia Prague for Astana.
- 1-0 loss to Slavia and 0-0 v Villareal for Maccabi Tel Aviv.
- Not a match I can get an angle into.
18:00 - BATE Borisov v FC Koln - 2.76 FC Koln
- A Europa League match and the market cannot split the teams.
- Arsenal lead Group H and should cope with the 3 other teams.
- BATE and Koln are yet to win.I think BATE are advantaged tonight given they have scored 3 goals to Koln's 2 goals.
- Other than that, it is a tough one to call.
18:00 - Crvena Zvezda v Arsenal - 1.8 Arsenal
- It's all going Pete Tong for Arsene 'I can't believe they employed me for another year' Wenger. You'd like to think that the 2-1 loss to Watford was because of Europa League distractions? This from a club who should be in the Champions League.
- 3-1 v Koln and 2-4 v Bate so far for Arsenal in the Europa League. Too small a sample to be conclusive. They are conceding.
- Crvena are better known as Red Star Belgrade. 1-1 v BATE and a 0-1 win over Koln so we have some collateral form.
- Arsenal's Group H really lacks any strength but if any manager can cock it up, it's our Arsene!
- Red Star look to lack any goals compared with Arsenal so I would expect Arsenal to be able to outscore them today. Do remember Arsenal are conceding so lay Red Star if Red Star score first.
18:00 - Hapoel Beer Sheva v FCSB - 2.16 Hapoel Beer Sheva
- FCSB have 2 wins out of 2. 3-0 v Plzen and 1-2 v Lugano for FCSB.
- Hapoel beat Lugano 2-1 and lost 3-1 to Plzen.
- Hapoel keep scoring and conceding in the Europa League.
- Logically, FCSB are favoured today in a match in which both teams could score.
18:00 - Konyaspor v Red Bull Salzburg - 1.88 Red Bull
- 1-0 loss for Marseille v Konyaspor, and 2-1 win v Guimaraes.
- Red Bull 1-1 draw v Guimaraes and 1-0 win v Marseille.
- Salzburg are unbeaten in 4 away matches. Both teams scored in the last 3 away matches.
- On limited form, Red Bull should not lose, but the draw is still there.
18:00 - Lugano v Plzen - 2.02 Plzen
- Swiss v Czech sides in this Europa League.
- 2 2-1 defeats so far in the group for Lugano.
- 3-0 Loss v FCSB and 3-1 win v Hapoel Beer Sheva.
- Plzen tend not to win away matches in the Europa League.
- Lugano though are new to the competition - their last home Europa League match was in 2002.
18:00 - Marseille v Guimaraes - 1.36 Marseille
- A look at Portuguese teams like Sporting Lisbon, Porto and Benfica in European competition does suggest they struggle when outside of domestic competition.
- For instance, in their last 5 Europa League fixtures, Guimaraes have lost 4 and drawn 1, and scored and conceded in all matches.
- Marseille have conceded 0-1-0-0-1 in their last 5 Europa League matches.
- It is a tight Group I so this match is a must win for Marseille in what should be a 3 horse race for qualification, excluding the Portugeuse.
- Guimaraes are scoring in defeat and if scoring one, they should not score a 2nd based on Marseilles defending recently.
- A slight concern with Marseille lack of goals. Still this should be their match against the weakest team in the group.
18:00 - Nice v Lazio - 2.62 Nice
- Nice have beaten Zulte 1-5 and Vitesse 3-0. Lazio come from Italian Seria A and should be more of a test.
- Lazio beat Vitesse 2-3 and Zulte 2-0.
- I agree with the market. I am sorry, I haven't a clue.
18:00 - Ostersunds FK v Athletic Bilbao - 1.83 Ath Bilbao
- Spanish sides historically treat this competition as if they want to win it. Atl Madrid and Sevilla are 2 very recent examples.
- Osterunds though are the team leading the way in Group J.
- A 0-2 win away at Zorya and a 1-0 home win v Hertha for Ostersunds. Yet to concede.
- 0-0 v Hertha and 0-1 loss to Zorya for Ath Bilbao suggests they may not be one of those Spanish sides taking this competition seriously.
- We are entering must win territory for Ath Bilbao but they may be layable if scoring first here as Ostersunds seem to have been under-stimated although arguably Bilbao are, on paper, the strongest side in this Group J.
18:00 - Vardar Skopje v Sociedad - 1.31 Sociedad
- Sociedad domestically have goals in them. We saw that at the weekend against Alaves where Sociedad let loose 2nd half. Do they carry this threat into the Europa League?
- Vardar are the whipping boys in their group. 0-5 loss to Zenit and 3-1 loss to Rosenborg. You fear the worst if Sociedad are on their game.
- Sociedad beat Rosenborg 4-0 and lost 3-1 to Zenit. The latter was a slight surprise.
- With Rosenborg away to group L leaders Zenit, this presents a good opportunity for Sociedad to get 3 points. And they must really. All 3 teams would be expected to beat these Macedonians. At their best, 3 goals expected of the Spaniards today.
18:00 - Zenit St Petersburg v Rosenborg - 1.32 Zenit
- Zenits shock 0-1 loss at the weekend - do we put that down to prioritising the Europa League? They dominate the group with a 0-5 win over Vardar and 3-1 win over Sociedad. The latter is impressive given Sociedads recent goalscoring, as detailed above.
- Rosenborg lost to Sociedad 4-0 and beat Vardar 3-1.
- On collateral form I would expect a Zenit win and put their poor weekend loss down to distractions.
18:00 - Zorya v Hertha Berlin - 2.2 Hertha Berlin
- In Group J, Zorya lost 0-2 to Ostersunds, and beat Ath Bilbao 0-1.
- Hertha Berlin 0-0 v Ath Bilbao and 1-0 loss v Ostersunds.
- Not for me this match.
18:00 - Zulte-Waregem v Vitesse - 2.42 Zulte
- Zulte have lost 1-5 v Nice and 2-0 loss v Lazio.
- Vitesse lost 2-3 v Lazio and 3-0 v Nice.
- Another match with very few angles. Similar losses.
20:05 - AC Milan v AEK Athens - 1.43 AC Milan
- 6 wins out of 6 in 2017 for AC Milan in this competition.They have only started conceding in this group stage. 1-5 win away at Austria Vienna and 3-2 win at home v Rijeka.
- AEK beat Rijeka 1-2 and drew 2-2 with Austria Vienna.
- I cannot get a read on AEK Athens I'm afraid. Tough to decipher their strengths and weaknesses and where they lie in the pecking order when compared with AC Milan.
- Milan have goals in them. They keep scoring so count on a Milan goal or two today. Note that Milan have been conceding now in the group stage so Athens may get on the scoresheet. They have scored 2 goals in each of their matches.
- This could be a both teams to score and AC Milan not to lose.
20:05 - Atalanta v Apollon Limassol - 1.28 Atalanta
- 4th in Seria A last year really should have it easy against this Cypriot side. 2 draws sees Limassol in 2nd spot behind Atalanta.
- 1-1 v Lyon and 2-2 v Everton is, on paper, impressive from Limassol. They have now scored and conceded in 4 consecutive Europa League matches, score drawing the last 3.
- Atalanta are new to the Europa League, and beat Everton 3-0 and drew 1-1 with Lyon.
- Watch out for a Limassol goal. Certainly if they score first, they are layable based on their score draw sequence.
20:05 - Austria Vienna v Rijeka - 2.7 Austria Vienna
- The odds are immediately off-putting.
- Rijeka have 2 consecutive defeats in the Europa League, Austria Vienna have a loss and a draw.
- Both teams scored and conceded in these 2 teams' matches.
- Rijeka have tended to concede 2 goals regularly in this competition.
- Austria Vienna did beat another Croatian side Osijek 1-2.
- There is a greater feeling that Rijeka are more vulnerable than Austria Vienna. I would expect Rijeka to concede.
20:05 - Braga v Ludogorets - 2.12 Braga
- Braga look good this season and have continued that into the Europa League. 4 consecutive wins see both teams scoring, and 2 2-1 wins in Group C.
- Ludogorets are 2nd with a win and a draw. Ludogorets kept 4 clean sheets, 3 0-0's before a 2-1 win over Hoffenheim.
- 3 consecutive 0-0's away in the Europa League for Ludogorets.
- How might this match play out? We are likely to see a defensive set up from Ludogorets. I do think that Braga can score and end this 0-0 sequence.
- 3 consecutive 0-0's is a long enough sequence for 0-0.
20:05 - Dynamo Kiev v Young Boys - 1.72 Dynamo Kiev
- In Group B, this is 1st and 2nd.
- 3-1 v Skenderbeu and 2-3 win v Partizan for Kiev.
- Young Boys have 2 1-1 draws v the same teams.
- Kiev were very poor in the league at the weekend. Is that another Europa League distraction result?
- Both teams could score today. I would lay Young Boys if Young Boys scored first today. I like Dynamo Kiev's goalscoring in this competition.
20:05 - Everton v Lyon - 2.54 Everton
- Everton lost to Atalanta and drew 2-2 with Apollon in their Group E match.
- 2 1-1 draws for Lyon. Lyon have no win in 4 away matches now in the Europa League.
- Another 'welcome to the Europa League' match. Not for me.
20:05 - Hoffenheim v Basaksehir - 1.63 Hoffenheim
- Hoff did not last long in a return to the Champions League.
- 2 2-1 defeats in their group suggest that the Hoff may not prioritise this competition as they are better than defeats to Sporting Braga and Ludogorets.
- Hoff to continue the scoring and conceding pattern of domestic football.
- I would not be so quick to quote Hoff at 1.63. Basaksehir are the new darlings of Turkish football.
- They drew 0-0 with Ludogorets and lost 2-1 to Sporting Braga so form is similar.
- Bespite quite liking Basaksehir, their away form is very poor conceding 2 goals in each of their last 4 matches.
- There are only 2 matches to work with for the Hoff so very little I can have a go at.
- Do not be surprised if the Hoff scored today. I could foresee a 2-1/1-2 scoreline.
20:05 - Sheriff Tiraspol v Lokomotiv - 2.2 Lokomotiv
- Sheriff have 4 0-0's in 5 matches in the Europa League.
- Lokomotiv drew 0-0 v Copenhagen and 3-0 win v Zlin.
- 2 consecutive 0-0's at home for Sheriff.
- I look for 0-0 sequences to end, particularly (relatively) long ones. Sheriff do though look adept at clean sheets.
- There is a hint with Lokomotiv's match v Zlin where they scored 3 goals and Sheriff managed a 0-0 that this particularly bit of collateral form can signal an end to the 0-0.
- If a team is to win, it does look as if it will be Lokomotiv.
20:05 - Skenderbeu v Partizan Belgrade - 2.58 Partizan
- This is Group B where both sides have a draw and a loss.
- No win in 6 Europa League matches for the Albanian home side.
- Both sides drew with Young Boys and lost v Dinamo Kiev.
- 0-0-0-4-1-2 goals scored by Partizan recently. At least they are scoring now in this group stage.
20:05 - Villarreal v Slavia Prague - 1.43 Villareal
- The top 2 in group A albeit only 2 matches played. A win and a draw each.
- Only 3 losses for Villareal in the Europa League since 1st October 2015 is good stuff. they lost to Liverpool, Osmanlispor and Roma.
- They also beat those 3 in what were 2 legged matches.
- This looks like a Spanish side who like a Europa League run.
- Slavia Prague are infrequent visitors to this competition (they do sometimes play champions League as well) but when they have been in the competition, they have been poor.Wins have been occasional.
- Villareal beat Astan 3-1. Slavia drew 1-1 with them.
- Villareal drew 0-0 with Maccabi Tel Aviv. Slavia beat them 1-0.
- If Villareal consent to give their best, past results in this competition suggest they should cope with this Czech opposition.
20:05 - Zlin v FC Copenhagen - 1.92 FC Copenhagen
- Czech v Danish.
- In Group F, Copenhagen have 2 draws and are 2nd, Zlin have a draw and a loss.
- Zlin are yet to score a goal.
- 2 consecutive 0-0's for Copenhagen so far this Europa League.
- On form, we should expect another 0-0. Probability wise though Copenhagen should end their 0-0 sequence but at the weekend were very poor despite dominating their league match.
- Another 'leave along' match.