Football tips: Paddy’s 3 best bets as Arsenal chase goals away at Slavia Prague

Our top tipster Paddy Murphy crunchers the numbers ahead of the quarter-final second leg in the Czech Republic.


*All prices are bang up to date with our snazzy widget, while in-copy odds are accurate at the time of publication but subject to change

Arsenal face Slavia Prague on Thursday night in the second leg of their Europa League quarter-final match. The Gunners are tied 1-1 after the first leg which saw them register just two shots on goal for the entire match where they were wasteful in possession and could hardly string a few passes together.

Slavia have already dumped two British sides out of the competition in Rangers and Leicester City and while the market has Arsenal as favourites here, with an away goal under their belts Slavia could pull off another surprise here.

We’ve gone through the stats and odds to find the three Best Bets, let’s have a look at what we’ve found.

Thursday 8pm: Slavia Prague v Arsenal 
BT Sport 1


Both Teams to Score

Slavia Prague have only been held scoreless in three of their last 25 home matches in all competitions. Brendan Rodger’s Leicester being one of the few teams to keep them quiet. It’s fairly rare to see Arsenal keep a clean sheet as well, and even more rare to see it when they’re playing away from home. Indeed, Arsenal have kept just four clean sheets over their last 15 away matches – two of which were against West Brom and Sheffield United which doesn’t really count for much.

In fairness to the Gunners, they almost always get on the scoresheet on their travels, scoring at least one in 12 out of their last 15 matches on the road. With so much at stake here we may well see a cagey start but both teams have the players and the experience to at least get one each.

Second Half Over 1.5 Goals

Over their last five matches Arsenal have only scored two first falf goals, one of which was an own goal. Slavia also do most of their grunt work in the second half of matches, scoring just three in the first 45 over their five most recent fixtures. In Slavia’s five Europa League matches since the turn of the year they’ve only netted twice in the first period of play, scoring four in the second half. It’s a similar record for Arsenal, they’ve also only scored two first-half goals in their five most recent Europa League matches, scoring six during the second halves of those matches.

Digging a little deeper into their away stats, we can see that Arsenal have scored eight second-half goals over their five most recent away matches. The onus, of course, will be on Arsenal to attack here and that will suit Slavia perfectly, as the pressure mounts on the away side to get a goal they’ll be able to attack the space left at the back and with both teams scoring the vast majority of their goals after the break we should see at least two goals here.

Slavia Prague Double Chance

There’s just something about this Arsenal team that gives off the whiff of ‘choke’. Let’s be honest, they blew it last week against Slavia. Only registering two shots on goal over 90 minutes is embarrassing at this level of football. They’re such a strange side, they can play some of the most attractive-looking football in the Premier League at times but most of the time they just don’t look all that bothered.

Looking at their most recent form, they’ve won just one of their last five matches, beating the Premier League’s worst team, Sheffield United, drawing two and losing two and while the Europa League has been a silver lining in a mediocre season for the Gunners, they’ve only won two of their last five in the competition, drawing two and losing one. Slavia are unbeaten over their five home Europa League matches this season and are unbeaten over their last 32 home matches in all competitions. The value here is with Slavia Prague Double Chance.

Slavia Prague v Arsenal tips

Both Teams to Score
cond Half Over 1.5 Goals
Slavia Prague Double Chance

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