RED STAR BELGRADE
Arsenal have found the transition from Champions league to the Europa league fairly comfortable so far, after the Gunners picked up victories in both of their opening two group games and ended those matches with two goal leads. On Thursday the premier League side travel to Serbia to take on a Red Star Belgrade side that are also unbeaten in their opening two matches, after they drew at home with BATE and beat struggling Cologne.
These two clubs have faced each other before, not that any of the current playing squad from either side will remember that match though as it took place in the late 1970’s. Arsenal were beaten 1-0 in Serbia before only managing a 1-1 draw at Highbury in the reverse fixture, so ended up losing 2-1 on aggregate. Red Star head into this weeks tie as the slight form favourites after they won an impressive five of their last six matches, and only lost on one occasion. The Gunners also lost just once during that period, but one draw and only four wins means they sit behind their hosts in the form guide, but remain the bookies favourites to win the game.
Both sides have looked very dangerous going forward in recent weeks, and despite both teams playing well defensively, we expect both sides to get on the scoreboard on Thursday. Red Star have scored fourteen times in their last six matches, which eclipses Arsenal’s total of ten scored during that same period of games. Ghana forward Boakye is the danger man up front for the home side, having scored seven goals in qualifying and one in the group stage. Theo Walcott might not be the first name on the team sheet for Arsenal in the league, but he top scores in Europe with two goals for the Gunners and could start tomorrow after not featuring at all during the defeat at Watford.
Giroud only made a brief appearance from the bench during that disappointing collapse against the Hornets, and the French international is likely to start up front on Thursday as he offers the hold up play the Gunners are likely to need away from home in Europe, and we’re tipping the target man to get on the scoreboard during the 90 minutes.
We have lots of confidence in our prediction for both teams to score in this game, and the odds on that happening are currently priced at around 7/10 which suggests the bookmakers agree with this betting tip. We believe Arsenal’s clash will shine through in the end so expect a victory with over 2.5 goals scored and our tip for the final score is 4-2
PREDICTION; ARSENAL WIN AND OVER 2.5 GOALS