Mar 7, 2019
Mar 7, 2019

Europa League Round of 16 betting preview

Analysing the 2018/19 Europa League knockout stage

Which teams will win the first leg of the last 16?

Can Arsenal win the Europa League?

Are Chelsea worthy favourites for the Europa League?

Europa League Round of 16 betting preview

Once maligned by bigger teams, the Europa League has earned a more serious reputation in recent years from teams and fans alike. The presence of Chelsea, Arsenal, Inter Milan and Napoli, who know victory will now guarantee them a place in the Champions League, makes for a much stronger competition than in seasons gone by. Read on for some betting insight.

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Inter Milan




Eintracht Frankfurt




RB Salzburg


Zenit St Petersburg


Chelsea vs. Dynamo Kyiv

Date: 07/03/2019

First leg venue: Stamford Bridge

Time: 20:00 UTC

Key players: Eden Hazard, Gonzalo Higuain, Fran Sol, Vitaliy Buyalsky

Coasting to a 5-1 aggregate victory over Malmo in the Round of 32, tournament favourites Chelsea have won seven of their eight matches in the Europa League this season – drawing the other. Domestically, the Blues are in good-form – recently beating Fulham away and Tottenham at home. Losing to Manchester City on penalties in the League Cup final last weekend, much of the talk at Chelsea these days is the apparent growing rift between manager Maurizio Sarri and his players.

Dynamo Kyiv beat Olympiakos 3-2 on aggregate to progress – thanks in part to a late away goal by Benjamin Verbic in the first leg which finished 3-2. However, Dynamo had not won any of their last nine knockout stage matches in Europe (not including qualifying) before beating the Greek side.

Napoli vs. RB Salzburg

Date: 07/03/2019              

First leg venue: San Paolo Stadium

Time: 20:00 UTC

Key players: Kalidou Koulibaly, Lorenzo Insigne, Takumi Minamino, Munas Dabour

Champions of Austria for the fifth year running in 2017/18, RB Salzburg reached the semi-finals of last year’s competition. Eliminating Real Sociedad, Borussia Dortmund and Lazio, before losing to beaten finalists Marseille in the semi-finals.

The highest-scoring third-placed team in the UEFA Champions League with nine points, Napoli lost out on second place in Group C to Liverpool on goals scored. Thrashing FC Zurich 5-1 on aggregate in the Round of 32. Currently second in Serie A, and with the likes of Kalidou Koulibaly, Lorenzo Insigne, Dries Mertens and Arkadiusz Milik in their ranks, Carlo Ancelotti’s men will expect a much better Europa League showing this season around – having been knocked out by RB Leipzig in the previous round last year.

Rennes vs. Arsenal

Date: 07/03/2019

First leg venue: Roazhon Park

Time: 17:55 UTC

Key players: M'Baye Niang, Hatem Ben Arfa, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Alexandre Lacazette

Already their most successful European campaign ever, Rennes will welcome continental heavyweights Arsenal to Brittany in what will be one of the biggest games ever in the French club’s history.

Recovering from three successive defeats to take Group K's runners-up spot behind Dynamo Kyiv, they then caused an upset by defeating Group G winners Real Betis in the round of 32, winning 3-1 in Seville after a 3-3 home draw.

Much like their Premier League and London rivals Chelsea, Arsenal’s chances of progression will be greatly enhanced if Unai Emery decides to field a strong squad – though with a big game against Manchester United this weekend he may well choose not to.

Winning the Europa League three years in a row while manager at Sevilla, Emery is clearly ready for the competition (The Gunners won five and drew once in their group) and knows it’s probably Arsenal’s best chance of securing Champions League soccer for next season.

Sevilla vs. Slavia Praha

Date: 07/03/2019

First leg venue: Ramon Sanchez-Pizjuan Stadium

Time: 17:55 UTC

Key players: Wissam Ben Yedder, Jesus Navas, Miroslav Stoch, Josef Husbauer

Having won the Europa League five times, including 2013/14, 2014/15 and 2015/16, Sevilla very much fancy the competition – and scored impressive 18 goals on their way to topping Group J.

Beating a good Lazio side 3-0 on aggregate in the previous round, Sevilla may well view Slavia Praha as a weaker opposition and will fancy their chances to progress.

Currently, Sevilla sit sixth in La Liga and have won just one of their last ten games. However, in recent years their post-Christmas domestic slump has normally been accompanied by domestic success.

In stark contrast, Slavia made it through the Europa League group stage for the first time in their history, finishing runners-up to Zenit in Group C with ten points. They then knocked out Genk with a 4-1 second-leg win in Belgium following a 0-0 draw in Prague.


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    Valencia vs. Krasnodar

    Date: 07/03/2019

    First leg venue: Mestalla Stadium

    Time: 20:00 UTC

    Key players: Daniel Parejo, Rodrigo, Magomed-Shapi Suleymanov, Wanderson

    Having entered the last round from the Champions League Group H, Valencia had lost twice without scoring against Juventus, but took four points off both Manchester United and Young Boys, beating each at home and drawing away.

    Seeing off Scottish champions Celtic in the Round of 32 3-0 on aggregate, Valencia are much improved domestically, after a very poor start. Now seventh in La Liga, they have lost just once in their last ten league games – winning four.

    Krasnodar finished runners-up to another La Liga side, Sevilla, in Group J, losing out on first place only on the head-to-head rule after matching the section winners' haul of 12 points.

    Surprisingly knocking Bayer Leverkusen out in the last round, thanks to Magomed Suleymanov's 84th-minute free-kick in Germany, Krasnodar drew 0-0 at home before their dramatic 1-1 away draw.

    Eintracht Frankfurt vs. Inter Milan

    Date: 07/03/2019

    First leg venue: Commerzbank-Arena

    Time: 17:55 UTC

    Key players: Sebastian Haller, Luka Jovic, Ivan Perisic, Mauro Icardi

    A dramatic 2017/18 German Cup final victory over Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich – 3-1 in Berlin – gave Eintracht their first major silverware in 30 years and secured their first European campaign in five.

    Topping Group H with maximum points, as they won home and away against Lazio, Apollon Limassol and 2017/18 runners-up Marseille, the German side saw off Shakhtar Donetsk, who had moved across from the Champions League, 6-3 on aggregate in the Round of 32.

    Failing to win their last four Champions League group games, Inter were pipped to second place by Tottenham Hotspur, after the Italian giants could only draw 1-1 at home to PSV Eindhoven.

    Drawing Rapid Vienna in the Round of 32, Inter won 5-0 on aggregate – winning 4-0 at home and 1-0 away.

    Currently sitting fourth in Serie A, a point behind bitter rivals AC Milan and some way off leaders Juventus, Inter will view the Europa League as a big opportunity to capture major silverware this season.

    Dinamo Zagreb vs. Benfica

    Date: 07/03/2019

    First leg venue: Stadion Maksimir

    Time: 17:55 UTC

    Key players: Mislav Orsic, Bruno Petkovic, Haris Seferovic, Jonas

    Dinamo Zagreb's longest European campaign continues, having never previously successfully come through a European group stage.

    Beating Viktoria Plzen 4-2 on aggregate, the Croatian side had lost the first leg 2-1 – but railed in the return fixture to win 3-0.

    Unbeaten in the Round of 16, Benfica’s entered the Europa League having finished third in their Champions League group, behind Bayern Munich and Ajax, with seven points.

    The only all Champions League tie of the Round of 32 tie, Benfica eliminated Turkish giants Galatasaray in the previous round – 2-1 on aggregate.

    Zenit St Petersburg v Villarreal

    Date: 07/03/2019

    First leg venue: Gazprom Arena

    Time: 17:55 UTC

    Key players: Artem Dzyuba, Branislav Ivanovic, Alfonso, Pablo Fornals

    Now in their 12th successive European campaign, Zenit topped Group C – which featured Slavia Prague, Bordeaux, and FC Copenhagen.

    Domestically, Zenit sit at the top of the Russian League but have played just once since December thanks to the Russian winter break.

    Beating Turkish giants Fenerbahce 3-2 on aggregate, a Sardar Azmoun double gave them a 3-1 second leg win – after losing 1-0 away in the first.

    Zenit last won the completion back in 2008, beating Rangers 1-0 at the Etihad Stadium.

    Villarreal progressed undefeated from a highly competitive Group G, drawing four times and winning twice, latterly with a 2-0 win at home against Spartak Moskva that sealed their qualification for the knockout phase for a fifth successive season.

    They maintained their unbeaten run with a 2-1 aggregate success against Sporting CP in the round of 32 (1-0 away, 1-1 home)

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