It’s all about silverware and taking a step up the European ladder. Yes, the Europa League is back on Thursday and we’ll be there with handicap betting odds on the best and most exciting football games.
Take a look at Sevilla if you want to see how Europa success can spur a team on. Thetitle winners in 2014, 2015 and 2016 are now established as a Champions League outfit and riding high in La Liga.
AA Gent vs Spurs
Spurs bombed out of this year’s Champions League and face a tricky trip to Gent to try and restore their Euro credibility. Mauricio Pochettino’s talented team aren’t in the best of spirits as they arrive at the Ghelamco Arena to face a Gent side which followed Donetsk in group H to qualify. Spurs also want to eradicate the painful memory of defeat to Liverpool last Saturday and must watch out for the dual threat of Kalifa Coulibaly and Danijel Milicevic, who each scored three in the qualifying group.
Spurs to win this tricky leg is at 1.80 with a -0.50 handicap.
Manchester United vs St Etienne
St Etienne are currently fifth in Ligue 1 and topped a tough Europa group containing Belgian giants Anderlecht, but the French have lost their last two away games. Manchester United’s young French starlet Anthony Martial would love to put one over Les Verts, having come through fierce rivals Lyon’s academy. He returned to United’s team and starred in a win over Watford at the weekend.
Elsewhere, the toughest tie of the round has to be Villarreal vs Roma: the Yellow Submarine are chasing a top-four place in La Liga while Roma expect a top-three place in Serie A. Try to unpick this game with odds of 2.53 a home win, 2.69 a Roma triumph and 3.00 the draw.
Martial will be cheering on his old friends as Lyon take on AZ Alkmaar, and the French need a lift having lost five of their last seven competitive games. Alkmaar qualified from Group D behind Zenit St. Petersburg.
Borussia Moenchengladbach host Fiorentina, having won three on the trot in all competitions. However, La Viola comfortably topped Group J, with Nikola Kalinic on target four times.
And Celta Vigo face Shakhtar Donetsk hoping for a return to winning ways, having exited the Copa del Rey to Alaves and losing to Atletico Madrid in La Liga last weekend. This could be tough for the Spaniards, though, as Donetsk dominated group H, winning all six games and scoring 21 goals.
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Disclaimer: Odds are correct at time of publish.