Zorya to Put Charleroi to the Sword Again


Zorya dominated Charleroi in Belgium last week and one sees no reason to pass up the opportunity to back the Ukrainian Premier League team to beat the Belgian Pro League side in their UEFA Europa League third qualifying round second leg.

The UEFA Europa League third qualifying round first leg in Belgium resulted in a deserved 2-0 win for Zorya, with the statistics sticking out like a sore thumb. Zorya had 22 goal attempts to Charleroi’s nine and the corner-kick count ended 10-1 in favour of the away team. One thinks that Zorya will go on with the job when its hosts Charleroi on Thursday.

Zorya has a decent home record against all bar the cream of the Ukrainian Premier League crop – it has won seven, drawn five and lost two of its last 13 domestic home games, only losing to Dynamo Kviv and Shakhtar Donetsk. Zorya’s home form and its performance against Charleroi last week is sufficient for one to think that many bookmakers, including 888Sport, Unibet and WilliamHill, are being generous in listing the Ukrainian Premier League side at odds of +100 .

The state of the UEFA Europa League third qualifying round tie means that Zorya cannot afford to rest on its laurels. If Charleroi were to open the scoring then the tie would be in the balance so one is expecting Zorya to be switched on from the kick off, while one thinks that the Belgian Pro League team may give up the ghost if the Ukrainian Premier League side extends its aggregate lead with the first goal.

Guimaraes had the better of its UEFA Europa League third qualifying round first leg versus Altach in Austria but it did not get its reward, losing 1-2 despite having double the number of goal attempts and corner kicks of its host. One thinks that Guimaraes is attractively priced at odds of -200 with several bookmakers, including BetVictor and  Boylesports, to beat Altach in Portugal on Thursday.

Altach has made a poor start to the Austrian Bundesliga, losing 1-2 at Grodig and 1-3 at Austria Wien. Those results do not bode well for its UEFA Europa League third qualifying round second leg against a Guimaraes team that did not drop that many home points in last season’s Portugese Primeira Liga, a competition that one rates higher than its Austrian equivalent. Guimaraes won 10, drew five and lost two of its 17 Portugese Primeira Liga home matches, including beating Sporting and holding both Benfica and Porto to draws.

Finally, one is keen to oppose another Austrian Bundesliga, Sturm, in its UEFA Europa League third qualifying round second leg versus Rubin. Bwin and WilliamHill are quoting odds of -154 about a Rubin victory in a home second leg that one thinks sets up well for the Russian Premier League side.

Rubin leads its UEFA Europa League third qualifying round tie against Sturm 3-2 so the Russian Premier League team, which is acknowledged as being good on the break, will be able to launch numerous counter attacks because its guest has to score at least two goals in normal time to have any chance whatsoever of qualifying for the next round.

Sturm had Donis Avdijaj sent off in the UEFA Europa League third qualifying round first leg but Rubin led 3-2 at the time of the striker’s 71st-minute dismissal so it would be unfair to say that the red card affected the result. Avdijaj is suspended for the second leg and, because he scored in the first leg, it would be fair to say that is a major negative for a Sturm side that has to chase the tie.

Tips Summary

Zorya to beat Charleroi
6th August 19:00 GMT
Odds:  +100
Where to Bet: 888Sport, Unibet, WilliamHill

Guimaraes to beat Altach
6th August 21:15 GMT
Odds:  -200
Where to Bet: BetVictor, Boylesports

Rubin to beat Sturm
6th August 17:00 GMT
Odds:  -154
Where to Bet: BwinWilliamHill

Belgian Pro League
Donis Avdijaj
UEFA Europa League
Ukrainian Premier League

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