The Europa League looks like Manchester United’s to lose after they saw off one of the best sides left in the competition with their 2-1 aggregate win over AC Milan on Thursday night. They’ve been given a winnable-looking match up with Granada in the quarters.
Arsenal will also be hopeful of landing the silverware and will fancy their chances against Rangers’ conquerors Slavia Prague. Elsewhere Ajax and Roma meet in what looks the tie of the round and Dinamo Zagreb tackle Villarreal.
But what have all these ties done to Paddy’s Europa League outright winner markets? Here’s the very latest.
Second in the Premier League and progressing nicely in Europe, albeit it the Europa League rather than Champions League, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer might finally be getting the hang of this management lark. A kind draw against La Liga’s Granada is just what the doctor ordered and Manchester United are well fancied to further furnish their trophy cabinet in the summer. Ajax or Roma lie in wait in the semis if United make it that far.
Mikel Arteta will be delighted to have landed Slavia Prague in the quarter-finals. He’ll be even happier to have avoided United, Granada, Ajax and Roma in their half of the draw with another winnable match between Dinamo Zagreb or Unai Emery’s (remember him?) Villarreal in the semis should they progress. Arteta has won the FA Cup at Arsenal but winning the Europa League is their most likely way into the Champions League next season and will be a big priority for them.
Villarreal landed another one of the plumb ties in the quarters and sit third in our market as a result. The Yellow Submarine are struggling in La Liga and, like Arsenal, will probably need to win this to get into the big time next season.
Ajax will feel hard done by to have drawn Roma and they will have to do it the hard way if they are add to their European trophy collection. If they can topple their Italian opponents then Untied are likely to lie in wait in the semis.
For Roma, see above. A tough task for Paulo Fonseca’s side to get past their likely route of Ajax, United and Arsenal and their odds reflect this.
Landing United was the worst-possible scenario for Granada and it will take some doing just to make it through to the semi finals, let alone win the thing.
Slavia Prague might have dumped 10-man Rangers out in the last 16 but they only rate as outsiders here. They’ve had a great run but their European adventure for 2020/21 looks likely to end at the hands of Arsenal in the quarter-finals.
While Joe Hart might have enjoyed it, most Spurs fans were left furious as Dinamo Zagreb knocked the Premier League big boys out of the Europa League with a stirring 3-2 extra-time win. They will need similar heroics to go all the way, though.
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