Europa League: Qarabag vs Arsenal – preview & betting odds

By on October 3, 2018

matteo guendouzi

Arsenal can take control of Europa League Group E with a win when they take on Qarabag in Azerbaijan on Thursday evening.

The Gunners eased to a 4-2 victory over FC Vorskla in their group stage opener last month and another win tomorrow would set things up nicely ahead of the double-header with Sporting Lisbon.

Unai Emery has guided Arsenal on a fantastic run of form since losing his opening two Premier League games as Saturday’s win over Watford made it seven consecutive victories in all competitions.

Last years semi-finalists are one of the favourites to win the Europa League this season and they have the perfect man to take them all the way as Emery won the competition three times while managing Sevilla.

Qarabag lost their first group game to Sporting Lisbon so they desperately need a positive result tomorrow or they could find themselves six points adrift if the other group game result doesn’t go their way.

Team news

Arsenal have confirmed Petr Cech has been ruled out for up to four weeks with a hamstring injury so Bernd Leno should start in goal while Ainsley Maitland-Niles, Laurent Koscielny and Dinos Mavropanos remain on the sidelines.

Henrikh Mkhitaryan hasn’t made the trip as he chose not to apply for a special permit allowing Armenian nationals entrance to Azerbaijan amid ongoing tensions between the countries.

Emery is expected to rotate his squad so we should see the likes of Hector Bellerin, Nacho Monreal, Aaron Ramsey, Lucas Torreira, Granit Xhaka and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang rested.

Stephan Lichtsteiner, Sokratis, Sead Kolasinac, Matteo Guendouzi, Mohamed Elneny, Alex Iwobi and Danny Welbeck are all pushing for recalls and could start tomorrow.

Betting odds & tips

Arsenal are the 1/2 odds on favourites to win the with Novibet while you can back Qarabag at 23/4 with the draw on offer at 31/10. It’s difficult to see past an away win and we can can get more value by backing Arsenal -1 handicap at odds of 7/10.

There should be goals in this game so over 2.5 goals at odds of 3/4 looks tempting while my predicted score would be 3-1 Arsenal which can be backed at 11/1. If you want slightly higher odds then add Alexandre Lacazette as first goalscorer for 16/1.