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It is the Europa League today and I will not research all matches. It is usually a competition which is tough to get a handle on as the attitude of some teams is suspect.

16:00 - FC Astana v Villarreal - 2.36 Villareal

  • Astana qualify if they win and Slavia do not.
  • Villareal are through with a win.
  • 3-1 Villareal the last time these 2 met.
  • 2 consecutive wins for Astana v Maccabi Tel Aviv.
  • 1-1 and 4-0 for Astana at home.
  • Villareal are unbeaten. 2 wins and 2 draws.
  • 0-0 and 0-2 away for Villareal. 2 clean sheets.
  • Both sides will treat this as a must win match as they do not have the Slavia match to work with. On form, I would favour Villareal but I acknowledge that the market cannot really split these teams.

18:00 - Red Bull Salzburg v Guimaraes - 1.35 Red Bull

  • Salzburg will be through with a win, or if they draw and Konyaspor do not win.
  • Guimaraes will be out if they fail to win and Marseille gain victory.
  • Red Bull are unbeaten in 8 in this competition.3 consecutive clean sheets.
  • 1-0 and 0-0 at home.
  • 3 defeats and a sole 1-0 win v Marseille for Guimaraes.
  • 3 consecutive 2-1 away defeats.
  • Guimaraes are likely to concede today. That is what I would take out of the 3 2-1 defeats.
  • As to whether Red Bull have 2 goals in them at home having recorded 0-0 and 1-0 only in another question.
  • I would enter this match thinking Red Bull will not lose today.

18:00 - Zenit v Vardar - 1.12 Zenit

  • Zenit are qualified.
  • Vardar are out of the competition. This is a dead rubber. I would even encourage laying such short odds teams in dead rubbers.

18:00 - FC Koln v Arsenal - 2.72 Arsenal

  • Arsenal have qualified. Koln are bottom of the group.
  • 3 losses and a win v BATE for Koln. Arsenal are likely going to field a second string team given the fixture list will be getting crowded soon.
  • A match where angles are very hard to come by. No surprise were Arsenal not to win today with little to play for.

18:00 - Nice v Zulte-Waregem - 1.48 Nice

  • Nice will be through if they win.
  • Zulte will be out if they lose.
  • Nice beat Zulte 1-5 away from home earlier in the campaign.
  • 2 match losing run for Nice v Lazio.
  • Zultes only win has come v Vitesse.
  • I do feel that Nice are too good forZulte. The odds are a little tentative considering Nice won 1-5 away.
  • I will expect Nice not to lose.

18:00 - Athletic Bilbao v Hertha Berlin - 1.69 Ath Bilbao

  • Hertha will be out if they lose. Bilbao could go top with a win in Group J.
  • This Group is wide open.

Ath Bilbao

  • RECENT FORM ALL COMPETITIONS - only 2 wins in 14 matches.
  • RECENT FORM HOME - 1-0-1-0-1-1 scored in recent home matches. Poor stuff.
  • RECENT FORM EUROPA LEAGUE - 0-0-2-1 scored. When they did score 2 they drew with ostersunds.
  • RECENT FORM EUROPA LEAGUE HOME - 3 clean sheets in 4 1-0, 0-1, 1-0 in the last 3.

Hertha Berlin

  • RECENT FORM ALL COMPETITIONS - only 3 wins in 16 matches came at home - 4-3-2-6-6 goals in total in recent matches.
  • RECENT FORM AWAY - no win in 7.
  • RECENT FORM EUROPA LEAGUE - poor stuff.0-0, 2 defeats and a win v Zorya.
  • RECENT FORM EUROPA LEAGUE AWAY - 4 consecutive defeats.

Conclusions

  • a poor pair in a wide open group could both still qualify.
  • I would suggest a 0-0 back pre match if these 2 continue their poor goal scoring but then I see herthas 12 goals in 2 matches!
  • This is a typical niggly Europa League match. I will leave alone or trade via the inplay stats.

20:05 - Lyon v Apollon Limassol - 1.28 Lyon

  • Lyon are through if they avoid defeat. Apollon will be out if they do not win.
  • a penalty and an own goal made for the 1-1 draw when these 2 met last.
  • Lyon have now scored and conceded in their last 6 Europa League matches and drawn 4 of their last 5.
  • Lyon are unbeaten when they have played at home in the Europa League. 2 1-1 draws so far.
  • This does give us an angle in if we assume Lyon will concede. If conceding first, lay apollon and hope that Lyon equalise and maintain that unbeaten record.

20:05 - AC Milan v Austria Vienna - 1.3 AC Milan

  • Milan will be through if they win, or if they draw and Rijeka do not win.
  • Austria will be out if they fail to win and AEK gain victory.

AC Milan

  • RECENT FORM ALL COMPETITIONS - only 2 wins in 9 matches.
  • RECENT FORM HOME - failed to score in their last 4 matches.
  • RECENT FORM EUROPA LEAGUE - unbeaten in the Europa League in participating years since 2002. 2 consecutive 0-0's though. Did beat Austria Vienna 1-5.
  • RECENT FORM EUROPA LEAGUE HOME - 3 clean sheets in 4 at home.

Austria Vienna

  • RECENT FORM ALL COMPETITIONS - only 2 wins in 9 matches. 8 over 2.5 goals matches in the last 9.
  • RECENT FORM AWAY - only 1 defeat in 11 away.
  • RECENT FORM EUROPA LEAGUE - 5-2-3-1 conceded recently.
  • RECENT FORM EUROPA LEAGUE AWAY - scored and conceded last 8. 3-3-2-2-2-2-4 scored recently.

Conclusions

  • Milan tend to enjoy unbeaten runs at home in the Europa League and have 3 clean sheets in 4. They play a Vienna conceding readily in this competition but strangely in good away form scoring 2 goals at least.
  • I do think the Milan 5-1 win away at Austria underlines the gulf in class. Milan should get the win they need. I would speculatively back 3-2 here in case the free scoring Austria Vienna show up.