Best Odds: 11/5
The playoff round of UEFA Europa League qualifying is upon us, as a series of high profile sides mesh together with the underdogs in order to make for a collection of really entertaining ties. One such encounter that the majority of football fans will be looking forward to will be contested between Serie A side Torino and the Premier League’s own Wolverhampton Wanderers. Both teams finished seventh in their respective leagues last season, and both will have realistic ambitions of progressing all the way through to the knockout stages.
Historically speaking Torino are known for being a pretty big club in Italian football, and that’s the kind of reputation they want to uphold in European competition. They’re considered by many to be the favourites to win this first leg tie, and they’ll need to do so if they want to have any chance of progressing. They’ve got a few game winners within their ranks and aren’t afraid to get physical if necessary, which should lead to a pretty entertaining encounter.
Falque missed the last round of games with an ankle injury and is expected to do the same here, opening the door for Zaza to start the game up top with Belotti.
Nuno Espirito Santo’s men has led Wolves to a strong start so far this season, in what is their first taste of European football in 40 years. The club are taking every game as it comes and would probably consider an entry into the group stage as a bonus more so than anything else. They’ve got the kind of squad that could guide this club towards the latter stages of the competition, but this is a different level than they are commonly used to.
Traore and Doherty will battle it out for a place in the starting XI, with Doherty’s illness potentially giving the edge to Adama who made a great impact against Manchester United on Monday.
Factors to Consider
- The game will be played at Olimpico di Torino in Turin, Italy.
- Torino have won all four of their Europa League qualifying games so far this season.
- Wolves have won all four of their Europa League qualifying games so far this season.
- Torino have scored 13 goals and conceded two in the Europa League this season.
- Wolves have scored 14 goals and conceded one in the Europa League this season.
This is going to be a really tight few games, and we think the term ‘scrappy’ is probably best suited to this first leg – which is something both teams are almost certainly preparing themselves for. We don’t think either side will be able to get themselves on the scoresheet but if they do, it’ll only be 1-1. If we’re going to get a goalfest of a game out of this tie then it’s almost certainly going to be at Molineux, when both teams are fighting tooth and nail for the right to reach the group stage.
Best Odds: 11/5
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