Europa League: Arsenal Have Enough Quality To Qualify To The Last 16

A mixed bag of results from the first legs. As I predicted Arsenal’s away form caught them out once again, but will home form help them and Chelsea secure their place in the next round?

Arsenal v BATE Borisov (0-1)

Arsenal beat Bate 6-0 at the Emirates in the group stages of the competition last season and I feel the Gunners will comfortably overturn their one-goal deficit from the first leg.

Unai Emery’s side must do without Alexandre Lacazette who was red-carded out in Belarus, but they have enough quality to qualify for the last 16 although the lack of an away goal makes things more difficult than it should have been.

Tip: Arsenal to win to nil at 7/10

Valencia v Celtic (2-0)

You must go back to 2003 for the last time Celtic won a knockout away European tie losing seven of those games and failing to score in all eight!

The Bhoys have given themselves a mountain to climb by losing the first leg 2-0 at Parkhead and Valencia have won their last five European ties at the Mestalla by an aggregate score of 17-2. I expect the La Liga side to gain a narrow win.

Tip: Valencia to win to nil at 17/10

 

Chelsea v Malmo (2-1)

I expect Chelsea to warm up for Sunday’s League Cup Final with a comfortable win against Malmo. The Blues have won their last six home Europa League games scoring 17 times in the process and I take them to maintain that sequence against the Swedes.

Tip: Chelsea -2 on the handicap at 31/20

*Odds were correct at time of publishing the article

Michael Owen

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Michael Owen is a former football player, played striker for Liverpool, Real Madrid, and Manchester United. He has represented the England national team at three World Cups and after his goal against Argentina in the 1998 World Cup was voted the 2nd best goal of the 20th century, he was awarded BBC Sports Personality of the Year. He is the last Englishman to win the Ballon d'Or, receiving the honor in 2001.

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