While the Champions League action plods along, things continue to move at lightning pace in the Europa League with another round of games and another great selection of teams picked for wins this week.
This time out, we’ve plumped for a fabulous foursome of Sevilla, Valencia, AZ Alkmaar and Lyon who all look good to claim victories and can be backed in an accumulator offering odds of nearly 10/1 and a return of £108.90 for anyone betting a £10 stake with Ladbrokes.
As an extra treat, we also recommend throwing Juventus to beat Fiorentina – something they did just last weekend – at 2/5, to qualify for One Out? Our Shout! – an offer where Ladbrokes refunds your original stake if you place an acca containing five teams or more and are just one result off winning.
The Bulgarians have been the surprise package of the Europa League so far, coming back from two goals down against Lazio in the last round to seal their progress with a strike two minutes from time, but their luck looks set to run out against a Valencia team among the favourites to win the trophy.
Manager Juan Antonio Pizzi will be eager to salvage something from a poor season and can take heart from the Spanish club’s away record in this competition, which has seen them win four out of four and bodes well for a visit to Ludogorets, who tasted victory in just one of their last four fixtures.
It’s something of a miracle that Anzhi have made it to the last-16 given that, domestically, they remain bottom of the table and face a future without the backing of billionaire owner Suleyman Kerimov, though that won’t matter one jot to their in-form hosts AZ.
The Alkmaar side will be keen to progress and potentially go one better than the 1981 side that lost in the final of the competition to Ipswich Town. The good news for AZ fans is that their side are heading into this game bang in form, having claimed back-to-back 4-0 wins in the Eredivisie.
Former Arsenal man Remi Garde has done a fantastic job of turning round a season that was heading for disaster at Lyon, with the French side now just seven points off a Champions League place, which is no mean feat given the miserable run they had at the beginning of the campaign.
Home form has been key, with Lyon losing just one of their last 20 games at the Stade Gerland. Unbeaten in the Europa League, they head into this one looking for a fourth straight home win in the competition and could get it against a Plzen team that lost last time out away to Sparta Prague.
As hotly contested an Andalusian derby as you are likely to see, Sevilla’s superior league form and head-to-head record makes them a prime pick for victory over Real Betis, who look increasingly doomed to go down in La Liga.
The hosts, who won this competition twice during the mid 2000s, are on a run of four wins and will fancy themselves against a Betis team they beat 4-0 at the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan in the league. With the visitors shipping 12 goals in their last three against their Seville rivals, this could get ugly.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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