Milan v Real Betis, Thursday,17.55
A perfect start to their Europa League campaign means Milan should welcome the chance to get back in the winning groove after a last-minute goal by cross-city rivals Inter sunk them last Sunday.
Gennaro Gattuso’s side top Group F thanks to wins over 91 Dudelange (3-1) and Olympiakos (0-1) even though it took three goals in nine minutes for them to come from behind and win against the Luxembourg minnows.
Patrick Cutrone scored twice that night, equalising and then making the tie safe after Gonzalo Higuain had given the home side a late lead. Higuain also netted the winner in Greece.
With those two netting seven goals between them in that five game Serie A run and another four in the Europa League so far, they seem relatively generously priced in the anytime goal scorer market (11/10 & 15/8 respectively).
Milan are unbeaten in three Serie A games at home this season – part of a five-game unbeaten run at the San Siro – since Benevento wiped their eye last April.
And it’s that partnership up front and Milan’s solid start to Serie A this season that’s getting us jiggy for a home win tonight.
Best bet Milan v Real Betis: Home win @ 5/6.
Sporting Lisbon v Arsenal, Thursday, 17.55
Unai Emery is working miracles at the Emirates, and Arsenal look a supreme attacking outfit, but the Spaniard is yet to shore up that famously leaky defence. From 12 games played in all competitions this season, the London side would have triggered ‘Both Teams To Score – Yes’ on eight occasions, a neatly rounded two-thirds of the time.
In away matches, the market would have been hit on four out of five occasions, with the only time a home team failed to score against the travelling Gunners being Qarabag in the Europa League. So it’s fair to say they’ve got form, particularly when they’re on the road, as is the case with this fixture versus Sporting.
As for Sporting, they haven’t failed to score at home in any competition since October 2017, so they know how to find the net at the Estádio José Alvalade.
All things considered, it would almost be a surprise if BTTS didn’t come through, which is perhaps why the price is 8/11. Given Arsenal are on a run of 10 wins in a row, while Sporting have lost two of their last three league games, it feels fairly safe to suggest the English side will do the business and win in Portugal on Thursday, even with a potentially much-changed line-up. Adding the result element to the bet brings value and nudges it up to a nice 3/1.
Best bet Sporting Lisbon v Arsenal: The Gunners v to win and both teams to score @ 3/1
Marseille v Lazio, Thursday, 8pm
Both of these teams have been known to share a goal or four this season, and we’d fancy them both to tally on the score-sheet when they meet at the Stade Velodrome on Thursday night.
The French side need to get on their bikes after their start to the group with just one point from two games so far. Their home form in Ligue 1 is steadier however, where they’ve only dropped two points from a possible 15 and average three goals a game.
But they’ll face a steep Europa League climb if they can’t get a result at home against Lazio.
Simone Inzaghi’s side have tightened up defensively since shipping seven in two games against Roma and Frankfurt, but their difficulties earlier in the season can’t be written off just yet.
All of which suggests there’ll be goals here. Ciro Immobile has been a revelation for the Biancocelesti, scoring six in nine this campaign, including two in his last two Serie A games. He can extend that streak into the Europa League.
Best bet Marseille v Lazio: Ciro Immobile anytime goalscorer for Lazio @ 13/10
Odds correct at time of posting.