Arsenal vs Vorskla Poltava: Big Europa League win on cards for Gunners
Arsenal vs Vorskla Poltava Match Preview and Predictions
Arsenal start their second campaign in the Europa League hoping to go one better than last season's semi-final appearance.
[All odds correct at time of publication]
The board could not have picked a better man for the job as Unai Emery won this competition three times as head coach at Sevilla.
The Gunners were also drawn with Sporting Lisbon and Qarabag, but on Thursday host Vorskla Poltava who qualified automatically for the group stage by finishing third in the Ukrainian league, although they were a long way behind champions Shakhtar Donetsk and runners-up Dynamo Kiev.
When is it? Thursday 20th September
What time is kick-off? 20.00
Where is it being played? Emirates Stadium
Which channel is it on? BT Sport 2
Arsenal vs Vorskla Poltava Betting Tips
Arsenal reached the last four of the Europa League but missed the chance of a second appearance in a European final under Arsene Wenger in a 2-1 aggregate defeat to Atletico Madrid.
The Londoners start the match as 1/8 favourites to beat Vorskla Poltava, who are making their second appearance in the group stage of the Europa League.
Europa League Betting Tips
If you're interested in more tips for this week's Europa League matches, check out our other previews below:
Despite being fifth after eight games in their domestic league, Vorskla lost their first four away games, finally ending that run with a stoppage-time 1-0 win at Karpaty Lvov on Saturday.
Vorskla lost 1-0 at Dynamo Kiev on the opening day of the season but were trounced 4-1 by Shakhtar a few weeks later despite leading at half-time.
Emery is set to keep changes to a minimum although Lucas Torreira is expected to start, so the first of our Europa League predictions is for Arsenal to overcome a two-goal handicap and win at 21/20.
This weekend's best bets
If you're interested in accumulators or in-play betting, check out our regular betting columns:
First goalscorer tips
Danny Welbeck has not started a match under Emery this season but could get his chance on Thursday.
The former Manchester United striker bagged three goals in the Europa League last season and scored as a substitute in the 3-1 win against West Ham so he could be the man to break the deadlock at 16/5.
Anytime goalscorer tips
Lucas Torreira is another player that should start for the first time this season and may be worth a punt in the anytime scorer market at 5/1.
The Uruguayan scored four times for Sampdoria last season, including one in a 3-2 win against Juventus, so he has an eye for goal despite being better known for his passing and defensive capabilities in midfield.
Where the game will be won or lost
Emery will not take the Wenger approach this season and make wholesale changes for Europa League matches as he revealed in his press conference before the Newcastle game.
He said: "My first idea is not to change 11 players for one competition and the next competition. Each match is giving us information for how we can play."
With a strong Gunners team set to face a side that finished 16 points behind Shakhtar, we like the look of over 3.5 goals at 11/10 and for a 4-0 win at 7/1 in the last of our Europa League tips.
Emery could hand goalkeeper Bernd Leno his Arsenal debut as he is expected to ring the changes. The summer signing has yet to feature for the Gunners with Petr Cech playing every minute under Emery to date - but he is likely to get his chance to impress on Thursday night.
Torreira is in line for his first start while the likes of Mohamed Elneny, Danny Welbeck and Stephan Lichtsteiner will be pushing for rare outings as Laurent Koscielny (Achilles), Sead Kolasinac (knee), Ainsley Maitland-Niles (leg) and Carl Jenkinson (ankle) remain absent.
80+ Minute Goal Insurance - Free Bet up to £/$/€20 if a goal scored after 80 minutes turns a winning bet into a loser. Applies to Premier League, Champions League & Europa League Match Result bets only. Min odds: 1/2 (1.50). Terms apply.