Europa League knockout stage begins this Thursday, with several massive matchups. We at BetXChange carefully picked a few games that attract the fans’ biggest attention and decided to make a short preview of the same.
Red Star vs. AC Milan
This is a clash of two former European and world champions who had several legendary matchups throughout their history. The older football fans remember their meetings from the end of the 80s and the start of the 90s once they dominated the European scene.
Red Star came back to the European competition a few years ago, and they started posting solid results. They are a state project with enormous help behind them, and it is no wonder they once again found themselves in the knockout stage. This is a hard-working unit, with little sense for creativity, but with excellent discipline. They haven’t lost in the past 21 games, posting just four draws during that time.
Milan received a slap in the face against Spezia, and is now in a tough position. They have a clash with Inter coming up soon, which is why their coach Stefano Pioli decided to leave some of the important players at home, not bringing them to Belgrade.
Because of this, we believe that the game between them and the Serbs would end without too many goals. Our pick is under 2.5 goals 0.90 at BetXChange
Real Sociedad vs. Manchester United
The Red Devils are struggling lately, while on the other side, the Spaniards bounced back over the past two games, following a stretch of poor performances. We need to say one important situation here: the venue of the game isn’t San Mames, but Allianz Stadium in Turin. COVID-19 travel restrictions caused this change to happen.
Real defeated Cadiz with 4-1 at home, and Getafe on the road 0-1, posting consecutive wins for the first time this calendar year. The former Red Devils player, Adnan Januzaj is regular in the lineup, and it is expected to see David Silva playing as well. He was resting against Getafe, to be 100% ready for United.
As for Manchester, they aren’t losing, but aren’t winning as well. Three of the past five games this team played saw draws, and for United, all of them were like losses, as they pretty much finished their title race. A few weeks ago they sat atop the EPL, but now, they have virtually no chance to reach their local rivals, Manc City.
Expect to see a tough and conservative game here with a bit slower pace. That is why our first pick would be moderate efficiency, 2 or 3 goals. Odds at BetXChange are at 0.95.
Benfica vs. Arsenal
One other match that won’t be played at the original venue but in Italy. Benfica will “host” Arsenal at Stadio Olimpico, and try to take advantage of the Gunners shaky form and pretty pale defense.
Though, the Eagles themselves aren’t playing well lately, with them already being out of the title race. Unlike the previous years, Benfica has less talent and isn’t confident as before. They are still excellent when playing at home, having no losses in the last 10 games, 8 wins, and two draws, and allowing just one goal in the past five events. But the road performances are a big problem.
As for Arsenal.. well, we don’t quite know what to tell you about their performances and about their form because it oscillates enormously. This Sunday night, the Gunners showed two faces against Leeds United. At first, Arteta’s team grabbed a 4-0 lead. After that, they allowed two goals, and were defending, looking as if they trail 4-2.
For us, the best pick here would be both teams to score, 0.60 at BetXChange.