Europa League Round Up and it’s another winner

Sevilla win! An 8pt profit on the tournament.

Europa 2016

A summary of the bets

Sevilla 13.0 generally (15.0 with Corals) 1pt  WINNERS +12

Villarreal 26.0 generally 0.5pt e/w KNOCKED OUT SF -1

Fiorentina 26.0 generally 1pt e/w KNOCKED OUT LAST 32 -2

Sporting Lisbon 41.0 generally (51.0 with Bet365) 0.5pt e/w KNOCKED OUT LAST 32 -1

e/w bets are all 1/2 odds on making the final

 

Won last year with Sevilla and again this year. Villarreal made the semis as well and until someone topples the Spanish clubs they really are too big price wise for this. Dortmund were such a strong favourite it didn’t make sense.

More again on this next year.

Europa League Semi Finals

Villarreal and Sevilla are avoided each other in the draw and both have a decent chance of making the final. Sevilla’s poor away form could trip them up and they have started to look tired as the season comes to an end. 5pts have been staked on this tournament and whether it is worth covering a Shakhtar v Liverpool final is the one point worth debating. The price on that is anything between 4.1 and 4.4 so would have to stake 1.5pts to cover. If Villarreal make the final it’s a guaranteed payout as they were bet each way at 26.0 so if they lose in the final its a 6.5pt return for a +2pt profit. Liverpool are 1.57 to qualify so there seems little option in backing them to cover Villarreal.

The safest option is to cover them both losing but the small profit for Villarreal reaching the final might be eroded so I’ll leave them running.

A summary of the bets

Sevilla 13.0 generally (15.0 with Corals) 1pt NOW BEST PRICE 3.1

Villarreal 26.0 generally 0.5pt e/w NOW BEST PRICE 5.1

Fiorentina 26.0 generally 1pt e/w KNOCKED OUT LAST 32

Sporting Lisbon 41.0 generally (51.0 with Bet365) 0.5pt e/w KNOCKED OUT LAST 32

e/w bets are all 1/2 odds on making the final

Europa League Last 8

Sevilla and Villarreal both made it through to the last day and Villarreal got a nice draw in Sparta Prague. Sevilla have to face Athletic Bilbao which is a tricky match but they are favourites to get through. Borussia Dortmund are now just a best priced 2.75 to win the trophy which seems ridiculously short when they have 2 rounds to get through before the one off of the final.

Gameiro

Dortmund v Liverpool is the pick of the round and should be a fascinating contest. Shaktar Donetsk look to be the dark horse and are now back playing in their season again and have survived the winter break.

 

A summary of the bets

Sevilla 13.0 generally (15.0 with Corals) 1pt NOW BEST PRICE 7.0

Villarreal 26.0 generally 0.5pt e/w NOW BEST PRICE 8.0

Fiorentina 26.0 generally 1pt e/w KNOCKED OUT LAST 32

Sporting Lisbon 41.0 generally (51.0 with Bet365) 0.5pt e/w KNOCKED OUT LAST 32

e/w bets are all 1/2 odds on making the final

Europa League last 16

Not the ideal start to the Europa League tips as Sporting Lisbon and Fiorentina were both knocked out. Spurs were worthy winners and Sporting were disappointing against Leverkusen. Villarreal got past Napoli and have another tough draw against Leverkusen and are best priced 15.0. Sevilla got through and play Basel in the next round and are in to 2nd favourites at a best priced 9.0

 

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The Italian teams have disappointed again and Roma and Juve could both be out of the Champions League this round that will leave just Lazio in. Could Sparta Prague be good enough to beat them?  The full draw is shown below

Shakhtar Donetsk v Anderlecht

Basel v Sevilla

Villarreal v Bayer Leverkusen

Athletic Bilbao v Valencia

Liverpool v Manchester United

Sparta Prague v Lazio

Borussia Dortmund v Tottenham

Fenerbahce v Braga

Shaktar Donetsk had a very good result in the last round and have a nice draw this time round and Fenerbahce should be too good for Braga. Dortmund v Spurs is the pick of the round and means Dortmund are going to have to beat them followed by 3 other tough matchups to win this trophy. 5.5 still seems much too short on them.

 

A summary of the bets

Sevilla 13.0 generally (15.0 with Corals) 1pt NOW BEST PRICE 9.0

Villarreal 26.0 generally 0.5pt e/w NOW BEST PRICE 15.0

Fiorentina 26.0 generally 1pt e/w KNOCKED OUT LAST 32

Sporting Lisbon 41.0 generally (51.0 with Bet365) 0.5pt e/w KNOCKED OUT LAST 32

e/w bets are all 1/2 odds on making the final

Europa League

Today the Champions League kicks back into action but also so does the Europa League. The revamped league section has not been that well received but once this tournament enters the knockout section it becomes excellent. It has 32 teams so they squeeze in one more round than the Champions League and with the 2 time slots on a Thursday means you get back to back matches. It produces some excellent matchups and plenty of goals. The added bonus of a Champions League place increases the prize and all of this on a Thursday which is a big bonus.

Some tips were posted on the blog last season for the Europa League and the same will be done again based on past results.

europa

The Europa League has run in it’s current format for 6 seasons and the winners have been Atletico Madrid twice, Porto, Chelsea and Sevilla twice. Those teams come from Portugal, Spain and England and those countries have provided 17 of the 24 semi-finalists in those 6 tournaments. Spain are the European powerhouse at the moment and they have proven that in the Europa League and previously in the UEFA cup. Of the last 12 finals spanning those 2 competitions a Spanish team has taken the trophy in 7 of them and they have also provided a losing finalist in a couple. It therefore seems a bit odd that in the betting for this tournament it’s Dortmund and Napoli who are the favourites with Dortmund a clear favourite at a best priced 8.0.

7 of the last 12 winners were Spanish is a pretty staggering record and  they have 4 teams in it this season in Sevilla, Valencia, Villarreal and Athletic Bilbao. If any bookmaker offers the winning nation bet I think that is worth taking. Valencia are really struggling this season and are unlikely to be able to galvanise themselves enough to survive this tournament.

The Dortmund price looks much too short in a tournament this unpredictable. The Wolfsburg team, featuring De Bruyne, which came 2nd in the Bundesliga last season was eliminated in the quarter finals last season by Napoli and you have to go back to 2010 to find a German team in the Europa League semi finals. Bayern Munich are a massively strong team but the rest of the Bundesliga still has a bit to prove. Dortmund also start off against Porto and that is not going to be easy for them.

Napoli are best priced 12.0 and both them and Fiorentina made the semi finals last season and Juve also made the semis the year before so they are worthy of that price considering their position in Serie A. You also have Lazio and Fiorentina in the draw but Fiorentina have a tough opener against Spurs and Lazio are just too unpredictable.

Looking at the English clubs I think Spurs will not prioritise this tournament. They are looking solid for a Champions League place and battling for the title. A gruelling set of Thursday night matches is not what they need as they are also still in the FA cup. It would not be a surprise to see Fiorentina knock them out. Man Utd and Liverpool are second joint 3rd favourites at a best priced 13.0 but both have been inconsistent this year. However, it looks like winning this tournament is the only way they can play Champions League football and that is a massive prize for them so they both will be all out to win this. English teams often seem to be too short in these markets, possibly down to the volume of bets placed on them.

Sporting Lisbon are currently top of the pile in Portugal and have beaten both Benfica and Porto this season. Jorge Jesus is their manager and he took Benfica to the final in both 2013 and 2014 and now has changed teams so is longer under the Béla Guttmann curse. They have a tough draw against Leverkusen but Portugal has provided 4 of the last 10 finalists and they look to be a good bet at 50/1.

This looks to be a wide open tournament again and so the best strategy is to look for value. Spanish teams deserve a lot of respect and Villarreal and Sevilla are the best of the two this season sitting in 4th and 5th in the league. Sporting Lisbon are worth a speculative bet and at the price so is Fiorentina. If they can get past Spurs then they have a good chance and made the semi finals last season.

Advice

Sevilla 13.0 generally (15.0 with Corals) 1pt

Villarreal 26.0 generally 0.5pt e/w

Fiorentina 26.0 generally 1pt e/w

Sporting Lisbon 41.0 generally (51.0 with Bet365) 0.5pt e/w

e/w bets are all 1/2 odds on making the final

Europa League Winner

Sevilla won the Europa League and a big profit overall. Advised bets were

 

dnipro-vs-sevilla-winners-and-losers-from-2015-europa-league-final_1

15th February

Villarreal @ 20/1 with Tote, VC, Fred and BF Sportsbook (2pts)

Sevilla @ 19/1 with Bwin (1pt)

Sporting Lisbon @ 33/1 with VC and Coral (1pt)

Athletic Bilbao @ 28/1 with BF Sportsbook and Ladbrokes (1/2pt)

Totttenham @ 16/1 with most (1/2pt) – Coral have them at 20/1 but no-one else is close to that

 

15th May

Dnipro @ 3.75 with Bet Victor (2pts)

 

13pts profit on the Sevilla win and that’s now 7 of the last 12 Europa League winners coming from Spain. Not convinced that trend will continue next year as there are now 5 Spanish teams in the Champions League and unless any of them don’t progress from the group their UEFA cup entrants are might not be strong enough.

Europa League round up

On 15th February there were recommendations for the Europa League outrights which were

 

Villarreal @ 20/1 with Tote, VC, Fred and BF Sportsbook (2pts)

Sevilla @ 19/1 with Bwin (1pt)

Sporting Lisbon @ 33/1 with VC and Coral (1pt)

Athletic Bilbao @ 28/1 with BF Sportsbook and Ladbrokes (1/2pt)

Totttenham @ 16/1 with most (1/2pt) – Coral have them at 20/1 but no-one else is close to that

 

The draw was a bit of a pain as Sevilla getting Villarreal scuppered those big bets.

Altogether there was a 5pt outlay and if Sevilla go on to win that would be a 14pt profit. Sevilla are big favourites to lift the trophy so it makes sense to probably cover any possible losses here. Bet Victor offer 3.75 on Dnipro to lift the trophy (apparently Boyle’s are offering 4.2 but I can’t believe that or that anyone would be able to get any money on at that price). A simple 2 point bet on Dnipro at 3.75 guarantees no loss.

 

vidal

 

If Sevilla win the tournament then it’s a 13pt profit and if Dnipro do then it’s an 0.5pt profit and a bit of disappointment.

Dnipro @ 3.75 with Bet Victor (2pts)

Villarreal, a temporadon and the Europa League

In a couple of weeks time the Champions League starts again and so does it’s lower key cousin the Europa League. There are 32 teams left and so they have to squeeze in one more round than the Champions League between now and the final. There is a massive prize at stake for the winner this year with direct entry into the Champions League as well as the trophy.

The Europa League has run in it’s current format for 5 seasons and the winners have been Atletico Madrid twice, Porto, Chelsea and Sevilla. Those teams come from Portugal, Spain and England and those countries have provided 16 of the 20 semi-finalists in those 5 tournaments. It therefore seems a bit odd that in the betting for this tournament it’s Napoli, Roma, Liverpool, Wolfsburg and Inter Milan as the top 5 teams. Sevilla are the shortest price Spanish team at around 16/1. Spain are the European powerhouse at the moment and they have proven that in the Europa League and previously in the UEFA cup. Of the last 11 finals spanning those 2 competitions a Spanish team has taken the trophy in 6 of them and they have also provided a losing finalist in a couple.

6 of the last 11 winners were Spanish! That’s pretty staggering and the league does not seem to have weakened this year and in actual fact may even have got better. Sevilla are 16/1, Villarreal 20/1 and Athletic Bilbao 28/1 and all of them have to be some value based on those facts.

villarreal

After their game at the weekend Marcelino was talking in the press conference and said from his point of view the season Villarreal are having is a temporadon. This is just another way of saying an excellent season and you would have to agree with him. Copa del Rey semi-finalists and they are In the group of 3, with Sevilla and Valencia, that are fighting for that 4th Champions League spot. They have been on a an excellent run of late and when they lost to Barcelona on 1st February it was their first league defeat since 2nd November including a 1-0 win in the Calderon against Atleti. 20/1 looks far too big on them and looks worth a bet.

Athletic Bilbao are also in the Copa del Rey semi finals and 28/1 looks very big on them as well. The Champions League was a step too far for them and they did not have the class or experience to compete properly.

Athletic qualified by coming in 3rd place I their Champions League group but that is no real advantage in terms of the Europa League. 9 of he 20 semi finalists in the last 5 years came from the Champions League so there is no real evidence that either method of arriving at the knockout stages is better.

The other countries that have done well are England and Portugal. English teams are often poor value in Europe but Spurs at 20/1 look more value than Liverpool at 14/1 and even have a member of last years winning team in their squad with Fazio.

The only team from Portugal in the Europa League is Sporting Lisbon, who lie 3rd in the Portuguese League. Although they are 3rd they have lost just one game in the league this season and drawn both matches with Benfica and once with Porto so at 33/1 with the Portuguese history in this also look very interesting. 4 of the 10 finalists in the last 5 years have come from Portugal so they have the form to do it.

There are 32 teams still to play in this and the draw may not be kind as they progress through the tournament so it probably makes sense to cover a few teams and see where you end up.

 

My personal choices will be

Villarreal @ 20/1 with Tote, VC, Fred and BF Sportsbook (2pts)

Sevilla @ 19/1 with Bwin (1pt)

Sporting Lisbon @ 33/1 with VC and Coral (1pt)

Athletic Bilbao @ 28/1 with BF Sportsbook and Ladbrokes (1/2pt)

Totttenham @ 16/1 with most (1/2pt) – Coral have them at 20/1 but no-one else is close to that