Ian Wilkerson picks out his four favourite bets from Thursday’s Europa League action to make a four-team accumulator that returns at 11/1.
Aris Limassol v Real Betis (17:45)
Aris Limassol may not be too disappointed with their Europa League campaign so far as despite a 3-2 defeat to Sparta Prague, a victory over Rangers was encouraging.
But this looks a difficult test for the Cypriot champions against Real Betis, who are unbeaten in their last six matches.
Manuel Pellegrini’s side had to bounce back from a 1-0 defeat at Ibrox in their opener by beating Sparta, but their class should tell in this one even if their La Liga campaign has yet to ignite.
They have suffered just two league defeats this season, once of which was a 5-0 thrashing at Barcelona and a 4-2 loss at Athletic Bilbao where they took a two-goal lead and two of their opponents’ successful efforts were penalties.
A second Group C victory should certainly be within their scope.
Rakow Czestochowa v Sporting Lisbon (17:45)
Sporting Lisbon are looking to bounce back from a defeat to Atalanta in their last group game, but they should be able to bag a full return from their trip to Rakow Czestochowa.
The Polish champions have been a disappointment after dropping into Europe’s second competition. A 2-0 loss to Atalanta was a blow but they will be extremely disappointed with losing 1-0 at home to Austrian outfit Sturm Graz.
Rakow have also recently suffered a 4-1 at Lech Poznan and fell to a 2-1 league loss to Gornik Zabrze, so while they are fourth in the table, another title push is looking unlikely.
Sporting have won six of their last seven matches and they should be able to maintain that strong form.
Sparta Prague v Rangers (17:45)
Rangers’ first game under new boss Philippe Clement ended in a 4-0 home win over Hibernian, but there has been little in their away European performances to provoke confidence about their visit to Sparta Prague.
The Gers lost at Aris Limassol last time out and it was less than two months ago that they suffered a 5-1 Champions League humbling at PSV Eindhoven.
Sparta are top of the Czech league and have scored at least twice in each of their last nine home games, eight of which have ended in victories, so they look likely to have too much firepower for the Gers.
Roma v Slavia Prague (20:00)
Roma and Slavia Prague have taken maximum points from their two Group G matches, but it is the Serie A side who look set to take the points from this clash.
Jose Mourinho’s side have won their last four home matches without conceding and while Slavia have claimed two wins, this looks difficult.
The Czech side cruised past Sheriff 6-0 on the last matchday and have already beaten Servette in Switzerland, but they failed to win their away qualifiers against Dnipro and Zorya and this looks a far tougher assignment.