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EUROPA LEAGUE THURSDAY: We preview Thursday’s Europa League matches with a recommended BETDAQ bet and extended match stats. It’s FC ASTANA V MANCHESTER UNITED, BRAGA V WOLVES, FEYENOORD V RANGERS, ARSENAL V EINTRACHT FRANKFURT and CELTIC v RENNES.


3.50pm We have a fascinating day ahead in the Europa League and we start with an earlier than usual kick off with FC Astana hosting Manchester United. Astana sit bottom of Group L with no points from four games and a goal difference of minus 13. United have been terrible away from home recently, but they should have the class to come through this tie. They go into the last round of fixtures top of the Group and anything but a win here would be rather embarrassing for Solskjaer.

The match odds at the time of writing currently trade; FC Astana 2.98, Manchester United 2.5 and the draw is 3.75. Despite all of United’s troubles away from home this season, you have to feel that they are too big here at 2.5. Astana have been the whipping boys of Group L so far and while it might not be smooth sailing, United should get the job done and the 2.5 is just too big to ignore.

Manchester United to beat FC Astana at 2.5.

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5.55pm These two sides are already assured of going through to the knockout stages, but we need to decide who finishes top of Group K. Braga managed to beat Wolves on Matchday one but Wolves started the season poorly, especially domestically, and look like a different side now. A draw would be enough for Braga to top the Group, so we can expect a very cagey affair here – the home side won’t be taking too many risks.

The match odds at the time of writing currently trade; Braga 2.66, Wolves 3.3 and the draw is 3.05. Wolves went off at short odds to beat Braga with home advantage and they bring some very solid form into this clash. We feel that the 2.66 on the home win is very short and we’re happy to lay those odds. Wolves have picked up points as Arsenal and Manchester City in the Premier League recently and they haven’t put in a disappointing performance for a while. The 2.66 looks like a cracking lay.

Lay Braga at 2.66.

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5.55pm Group G is definitely one of the more interesting Groups with all four teams only separated by three points! Young Boys and Rangers sit first and second with seven points followed by Feyenoord and Porto both on four. It was always going to be a tight Group, but now Rangers have a good chance to get through to the knockout stages and they need a result tonight.

The match odds at the time of writing currently trade; Feyenoord 2.5, Rangers 2.96 and the draw is 3.6. It’s easy to see why we have an open market – it’s hard to expect anything other than a very close affair between these two. Rangers managed to beat Feyenoord with home advantage to get their campaign off to a good start and they have been a lot more solid in Europe this season. On Balance we would lay Feyenoord at 2.5 however we can’t get away from under 2.5 goals at 2.1. That looks absolutely massive in what should be a very close and cagey affair, we’d have it odds on.

Under 2.5 goals at 2.1.

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8pm Arsenal are having yet another rollercoaster season but they are already assured of top spot in Group F. Emery will more than likely take the opportunity to rest some of his first XI here and take a bit of pressure off them as the fans turn against the team again. Another disappointing result at the weekend has added fuel to the fire of the #EmeryOut side and it will be very interesting to see how the stadium reacts if they go behind early.

The match odds at the time of writing currently trade; Arsenal 2.06, Eintracht Frankfurt 3.65 and the draw is 4.0. Arsenal easily beat Eintracht Frankfurt 3-0 away from home on Matchday one, which came as a surprise given how strong Eintracht Frankfurt were in this competition last season. That away form hasn’t followed Arsenal to the Premier League! Given we expect Emery to rest some players here and the fact that Eintracht Frankfurt have more to play for here we’re happy to lay Arsenal at 2.06. They look woefully short on confidence and the 2.06 looks a good value lay.

Lay Arsenal at 2.06.

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8pm Celtic have the luxury of going into the final game already through to the knockout stages, but they can still finish second to need to finish the job. They currently sit top of Group E with ten points, while Cluj are in second with nine and play away to Lazio tonight. Celtic will be happy to have Rennes at home, especially as they sit bottom of the Group with only one point from four games. Ironically that point came against Celtic in Matchday one!

The match odds at the time of writing currently trade; Celtic 1.54, Rennes 7.0 and the draw is 4.7. Celtic have been very impressive in Europe this season and deserve to top the Group. They had a man sent off in that away draw with Rennes but they have been perfect since – winning all three of their fixtures. Rennes have lost their three games since and with home advantage tonight we’re happy to take the 1.54 on Celtic. They are better than this Rennes side and we feel they should be sub 1.5.

Celtic to beat Rennes at 1.54.

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