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Europa League Acca – Thursday 18th April

Last Thursday night’s tips were a mixed bag and a little disappointing after going so close on Wednesday night, but I think this week’s games line up to be a much more easy to predict set and that is, sadly, reflected in the odds for these selections.

The big game was in the Stadium of Light in Lisbon where Benfica saw their 19 year old wonderkid Joao Felix produce a sensational hat-trick performance to earn a 4-2 lead over the previously unbeaten Eintracht Frankfurt. Chelsea earned a battling 1-0 win in Prague thanks to Alonso’s late header, while Arsenal were solid 2-0 victors over Napoli, but the Italian side will rue a couple of gilt-edged chances that they missed.

The other game saw late drama as Valencia bagged two goals in added time to earn a 3-1 win on the road against Valencia, in a game that, somewhat frustratingly, I had tipped as a draw. That gives the famous Los Merengues a fabulous lead to take into the home leg and it is one that I personally don’t see them giving up.

We already know that the winners of the Arsenal – Napoli tie will face most likely Valencia or less likely Villarreal in one semi, which sets up the intriguing prospect of a Chelsea – Benfica, or Chelsea – Frankfurt second semi, if the English side can maintain their lead from the first leg in Prague.

It should be an interesting Thursday night of action and the games all kick off at 8.05pm that evening. Here’s my tips for each below, first leg scores are shown in brackets.

Thursday’s Football Acca – 09/04/2019

    • 8:05
    • Chelsea v Slavia Prague - Home Win
    • 8:05
    • E.Frankfurt v Benfica - Home Win
    • 8:05
    • Napoli v Arsenal - Home Win
    • 8:05
    • Valencia v Villarreal - Home Win
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Bet Analysis: Thursday 18th April

Chelsea (1) v (0) Slavia Prague – Home Win 

Slavia Prague, as I said they would, gave Chelsea a real test in that first leg and but for Alonso’s header late on, this game would be level heading to London. Chelsea though will be thankful for that goal as it gives them a strong platform to build on and from here I think the Londoner’s will go on to clinch victory in a relatively comfortable fashion. Mauricio Sarri’s team have been strong at home all season long and Prague, while strong at home, tend not to be the greatest travellers in Europe. As such, I can see a comfortable night ahead for Chelsea, especially if they can get an early goal which I think would ease their nerves and ensure they go through comfortably with another win here.

E.Frankfurt (2) v (4) Benfica – Home Win

This is the tie that I think has the potential for the most drama on the evening and after a hugely entertaining first leg, this could also be the best game to watch on the night. Frankfurt are very solid at home and rarely lose at the Commerzbank Arena, but Benfica put in a fabulous attacking display at home and they have some fabulous talents that can cause the German side a few problems. I do feel that both teams will score goals in this one and that it could come down even to the number of away goals to decide the winner. I am backing Frankfurt to win the game on the night, but whether that will be enough to make it into the last four, I am not so sure.

Napoli (0) v (2) Arsenal – Home Win

Napoli showed in the first leg that they have the ability to get at Arsenal and create chances against a rather lacklustre Arsenal back line of late and despite having a two-goal lead heading into this game, I think Arsenal fans will know that they have a stern test ahead of them at the San Paolo. Napoli are very good at home and in truth, I can see them winning this game and even scoring a couple of goals. The last three games between the teams, including last week’s encounter, have all finished 2-0 to the home side and if that happens here, extra time will be required. However, something tells me Arsenal will score a goal here and that may just be enough for the Gunners to squeak through, perhaps on away goals.

Valencia (3) v (1) Villarreal – Home Win

These teams met in this fixture in La Liga a short time ago with Valencia running out comfortable 3-0 winners and after their 3-1 win in the first leg last week, it is hard to see how the home side could throw this away against their local rivals. Valencia rarely lose in any competition but they have drawn a lot of games this season, but more recently they have been winning far more games than they have been doing and as a result, their fortunes have improved markedly. Villarreal are struggling in La Liga and their Europa League form has been a respite from that, but I think they are out of their depth here. I am backing Valencia to win this one comfortably and make easy progress into the semifinals.

Dean Wyatt

Author: Dean Wyatt

Dean Wyatt is the founder and editor here at Acca Nation. He’s been betting sports for over 20 years and is a profitable sports trader on the exchanges.

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