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BetBlazers Definitive Guide: Europa League Matchday 2

Europa League 3 October 2018

4 British teams go into Matchday 2 in strong positions. Let's look at the match odds, the form guides and how it might go on Thursday night.

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Salzburg vs. Celtic

Celtic head to the Alps on Thursday night to take on Salzburg. The Austrians sit second behind the Scots on goal difference and will be hoping their home advantage will see them pip the Glaswegians to an early lead at the top of the table. 

This is arguably one of the harder groups in the Europa League top teams Celtic, Salzburg and RB Leipzig all vying for the top two qualification spots. 

The two have met before with Salzburg getting the better of Celtic with one win, and the other match ending in a draw back in 2014.

Kick off (17.55 BST)

Europa Group B Celtic

Photo: UEFA

Salzburg are flying high at the moment and are in top form having won their last five matches in all competitions and scoring 18 goals in the process.

The Scottish champions have had an uncharacteristically rough start to the season and sit sixth in the Scottish Premiership. They got their Europa League campaign off to a winning start with a 1-0 win against Rosenborg. 

Form Guide

Salzburg

  • Wolfsberg (a) 1-4 ✅
  • Schwaz (a) 0-6) ✅
  • Rapid Vienna (h) 2-1 ✅
  • Leipzig (a) 2-3 ✅
  • St Pölten (a) 1-3 ✅

Celtic

  • Aberdeen (h) 1-0 ✅
  • Kilmarnock (a) 2-1 ❌
  • Rosenborg (h) 1-0 ✅
  • St Mirren (a) 0-0 ➖
  • Rangers (h) 1-0 ✅

The bookies have the home side and five time Austrian champions Salzburg and it's not surprising given their form. But Celtic look like they're getting it together and it's not a bad shout to back the Scots for over 5x the money. 

Salzburg vs. Celtic Match Odds

Qarabag vs. Arsenal

The Azerbaijans may have a strange sounding name but they're certainly no strangers to European competition. They've featured regularly in both the Europa League and the Champions League. They're more than familiar with English opposition as well, most notably playing against Chelsea in last year's UCL group stage. 

Arsenal travel to Baku in good spirits after impressive Premier League performances. They sit joint top of the table in Group E on 3 points, level with Sporting Lisbon. Picking up another 3 points on Thursday night will give themselves some breathing room with two difficult away matches in Portugal and Ukraine on the horizon.

Kick off (17.55 BST)

Europa Group E Arsenal

Photo: UEFA

Qarabag are dominant in their domestic league having won the last five championships with relative ease. They've also notched up wins in their last four league games, with only one defeat in the last five coming courtesy of Sporting in this competition. 

Arsenal are looking to seal their eighth straight win on Thursday night but will have to travel without Henrikh Mikhtaryan who as an Armenian international is not allowed to travel to Azerbaijan. The Gunners shouldn't be too worried though. Qarabag are currently 14-1 down against English opposition over four matches played against Premier League teams.

Form Guide

Qarabag

  • Sabah (a) 0-2 ✅
  • Zirä FK (h) 3-2 ✅
  • Gabala (h) 4-1 ✅
  • Sporting Lisbon (a) 2-0 ❌
  • Sumqayit (h) 1-0 ✅

Arsenal

  • Watford (h) 2-0 ✅
  • Brentford (h) 
  • Everton (h) 2-0 ✅
  • Vorskla (h) 4-2 ✅
  • Newcastle (a) 1-2 ✅

Unsurprisingly there's not that much value in the odds for an Arsenal win. But considering the Gunners let in two at home to Vorskla, and they struggled against lesser opposition last season in the competition it's not a completely sure bet. 

Odds for a draw sit at around half of what they are for a Qarabag win. Stranger things have happened.

Qarabag vs. Arsenal Match Odds

Rangers vs. Rapid Vienna

Similarly to cross town rivals Celtic, Rangers have been put in one of the hardest groups alongside the likes of Villareal, Spartak Moscow and Thursday night's opponents, Rapid Vienna. 

Rangers started their Europa League campaign off with a decent 2-2 draw away to Villareal, which will give coach Steven Gerrard something positive to build on when the Austrians come to Ibrox this week. Their performance in Spain was lacking but they showed strength of character to come back twice to deny the Spaniards the three points. 

Rapid Vienna on the other hand showed Spartak what they're made of, upsetting the natural balance of the group by beating the Russian in the Austrian capital convincingly 2-0

Europa Group G Rangers

Photo: UEFA

Both teams go into their fixture with mixed form over the last five with arguably their most impressive matches coming to weeks ago in the Europa League. Rangers have stumbled between impressive goal studded victories at home, to dour defeats away. 

Rapid Vienna are struggling in the league lying in eighth place but Rangers should be wary of them after they schooled Spartak two weeks. 

Form Guide

Rangers

  • Livingston (a) 1-0 ❌
  • St Johnstone (h) 5-1 ✅
  • Villareal (a) 2-2 ➖
  • Dundee (h) 4-0 ✅
  • Celtic (a) 1-0 ❌

Rapid Vienna

  • St Pölten (h) 0-2 ❌
  • Mattersberg (a) 4-5 ✅
  • Salzburg (a) 2-1 ❌
  • Spartak Moscow (h) 2-0 ✅
  • Austria Vienna (h) 0-1 ❌

The match odds for this game are understandably a little more balanced than in the other games involving British teams. Rangers are home favourites, but a draw or a Rapid win are fairly similar. If you fancy backing the Austrians you can get double chance at similar odds for a Rangers win.

Rangers vs. Rapid Vienna Match Odds

Chelsea vs. MOL Vidi

The most mismatched of the four British ties this Thursday. Chelsea welcome Hungarian side MOL Vidi to Stamford Bridge on the back of their opening win over PAOK in Greece two weeks ago.

Vidi are the lowest seeded team in the group and had a different experience in their opening match with BATE Borisov defeating them comfortably 0-2.

Chelsea have two quite undesirable away trips left to Hungary and the Baltic, and will want to see their home ties off with ease.

Europa Group L Chelsea

Photo: UEFA

Chelsea have been one of the standout successes of the Premier League since Maurizio Sarri has taken over. They've been revitalised with forward attacking play and it's likely their ebullience will extend even into what appears to be a relatively straightforward tie for the Blues.

Vidi are sitting third in the Hungarian first division and it's looking likely they'll lose their title to Ferencvaros this season.

Chelsea are yet to lose this season, and it'll be a real upset if this one comes to be their stumbling block.

Form Guide

Chelsea

  • Liverpool (h) 1-1 ➖
  • Liverpool (a) 1-2 ✅
  • West Ham (a) 0-0 ➖
  • PAOK (a) 0-1 ✅
  • Cardiff (h) 4-1 ✅

MOL Vidi

  • Disogyor (a) 0-1 ✅
  • Mezokovesd (h) 3-1 ✅
  • Cigand SE (a) 0-2 ✅
  • BATE (h) 0-2 ❌
  • Puskas Akademia (a) 2-1 ❌

The odds for a Chelsea win are so low for this game that there's next to no value in them and understandably Vidi victory odds are massive.

Chelsea vs. MOL Vidi Match Odds

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