Sunday, July 12, 2020

Prediction: Olympiacos vs Arsenal

Verdict: Both teams to score – yes

Best Odds: 8/13

Bookmaker: 888sport

Olympiacos and Arsenal seems to be one of the most intriguing UEFA Europa League ties in the Round of 32, as both clubs have enough pedigree to feature in the UEFA Champions League but now are set to clash for a spot among the best 16 teams of the competition. Kick-off for this match at Georgios Karaiskakis Stadium in Piraeus, Greece, will be at 20:00 GMT.

Olympiacos

The Greek giants enter this game knowing they are undefeated in their last 10 games at home in the competition (W5, D5) and the strong starts have been something noticeable in them. Olympiakos have opened the score in eight of those 10 games and also enter this matchup in a good run of form. They are on an 18-game undefeated streak since losing to Tottenham in the UEFA Champions League back in November 2019 and have won four of their last five matches in all competitions. Undoubtedly, they are a tough team to defeat and that idea gets even stronger when playing at home. The Piraeus-based side is riding an eight-game winning streak on home soil, notching three or more goals in six of those contests. During that run they also secured a 1-0 win over Crvena Zvezda (Serbia), meaning they are not unable to get results on European competitions as well. Would that be enough to give them a chance in this fixture against The Gunners?

Team News

Olympiakos will be at full strength entering this match. They won’t have injured or suspended players.

Arsenal

Arsenal are going through a disappointing season. Even though they weren’t expected to be title challengers in the Premier League, no one would have imagined they would have some many troubles to get closer to Europa League positions more than 20 games into the campaign. Mikel Arteta hasn’t shown his true mark yet, and the team seems to be struggling to score and/or close out games with any sort of consistency. However, and considering all the struggles, Arsenal are had a decent run of results in the UEFA Europa League group stage. They ended in a three-game winless run (D2, L1), but lost just one game overall (W3, D2, L1) and finished at the top of Group F with 11 points, above Eintracht Frankfurt, Standard Liege and Vitoria Guimaraes. Can they get back to winning ways and produce a strong result here? A win on Greek soil would do wonders for their trust and could put them closer to reach the Round of 16.

Team News

Callum Chambers (knee), Cedric Soares (knee) and Kieran Tierney (shoulder) have all been ruled out. As a result, Arsenal will be pretty weakened defensively.

To make things even more complicated, recent signing Pablo Mari might not feature here. He hasn’t played a competitive match since November, so he could be lacking match fitness.

Key Factors to Consider

  • Olympiakos are a forced to be reckoned when playing at home. They have scored three or more goals in six of their last eight home matches.
  • Olympiacos have led at half-time in just two of their previous six competitive matches.
  • Arsenal have scored six of their previous eight competitive goals after half-time.
  • Each of the previous six competitive H2Hs produced over 2.5 goals. Five of those six H2H matches also produced both teams scoring.
  • Olympiacos have the edge when it comes to the recent H2H record. They have won three of their last five meetings against the Gunners.

Conclusion

Games between these two sides have been very entertaining, filled with goals and action at both ends of the pitch.

That shouldn’t change here. I expect this one to end with both teams scoring.

Verdict: Both teams to score – yes

Best Odds: 8/13

Bookmaker: 888sport

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Juan Pablo Aravena


A freelance writer and sports analyst with almost five years of experience in the industry before joining SoccerNews, Juan Pablo Aravena is based in Chile and currently contributes to several publications and websites including SoccerNews, 12up, and Sports From The Basement, while also working as a fantasy beat writer for RotoWire, as a database editor for EA Sports, and as a football analyst for SmartOdds and InsideFutbol. His areas of focus are Serie A, Bundesliga, Premier League, LaLiga, and Ligue 1, but he has also written about MLS and South American football in the past.

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