The Europa League was once regarded as a sub-standard competition but that view has changed somewhat in recent years.
A chance to secure Champions League football by winning the tournament has encouraged teams to take Thursday nights seriously.
Arsenal, Chelsea, Celtic and Rangers are all in action – and all four feature in our latest 9/1 Europa League accumulator.
Without further ado, let’s get down to the tipping. It could be another entertaining night of activity in the continent’s secondary club competition.
BATE Borisov vs CHELSEA
BATE will be hoping to snatch a point from this clash as they look to secure passage through to the knockout stages.
The hosts, regulars in the Champions League a few years ago, have won four of their last five games at Borisov Arena – their sole defeat coming against PAOK Salonika.
Ruben Loftus-Cheek notched a treble in Chelsea’s 3-1 victory over Bate at Stamford Bridge and the England man could be central to their chances of success out in Belarus.
Maurizio Sarri’s side have been simply sublime in 2018/19 but the Blues boss could wring the changes ahead of a crucial Premier League clash with Everton.
However, Chelsea will still be quietly confident of putting Bate to the sword. 13/25 is a solid price for the visitors to score two or more goals on Thursday night.
TIP: Over 1.5 Chelsea goals @ 13/25
PREDICTED SCORE: BATE 1-2 Chelsea (Priced at 15/2 with 888sport)
Spartak Moscow vs RANGERS
Currently bottom of Group G, Spartak Moscow are searching for their first win of the Europa League campaign. Plenty of punters will fancy the hosts in this one…
British teams tend to struggle in Russia and Spartak will be quietly confident of notching three points despite winning just one of their last five games in all competitions.
Steven Gerrard’s men will need to be organised here. Spartak are likely to come out of the blocks quickly and Rangers may find themselves under the cosh in the early exchanges.
The Scottish outfit are sitting pretty at the top of the group and Gerrard’s side would almost certainly take a point from what should be a difficult fixture.
With that in mind, take the 7/10 for the visitors to win or draw. Rangers are much improved under Gerrard and another positive result beckons on Thursday night.
TIP: Rangers to win OR draw @ 7/10
PREDICTED SCORE: Spartak Moscow 1-1 Rangers (Priced at 6/1 with 888sport)
ARSENAL vs SPORTING LISBON
The Gunners have avoided defeat in 14 successive matches and you won’t find too many punters backing Sporting to prevail at the Emirates.
Unai Emery’s men have been scoring goals for fun during their unbeaten run and this one could get ugly for the visitors if Arsenal go for the throat.
Sporting find themselves third in the Primeira Liga table and they need to decide whether to prioritise the domestic crown or Europe.
The visitors failed to score in their last clash against Arsenal but that was an anomaly. The good news for Lisbon fans is that Sporting have scored in 12 of their previous 13 away games.
Taking everything into account, I fancy both teams to score at EVS. Arsenal should have enough quality to win but Sporting won’t let the Gunners have everything their own way.
TIP: Both teams to score @ EVS
PREDICTED SCORE: Arsenal 3-1 Sporting (Priced at 10/1 with 888sport)
CELTIC vs RB Leipzig
Celtic Park has hosted some of European football’s most memorable encounters over the years – could we see more history made on Thursday evening?
Brendan Rodgers’ men have struggled in recent times but Celtic fans will be expecting a huge effort from the Scottish champions in this contest.
RB Leipzig are three points clear of Celtic in the race to reach the knockout stages and an away win could signal the end for Rodgers’ side.
The German outfit are capable of giving anyone a game and traders have priced Leipzig up as one of the early Europa League favourites in 2018/19.
Avoiding defeat is essential from a Celtic perspective. The 22/25 on offer represents solid value considering their record on home soil.
TIP: Celtic to win OR draw @ 22/25
PREDICTED SCORE: Celtic 2-1 RB Leipzig (Priced at 12/1 with 888sport)
*Odds subject to change - correct at time of writing*