Saint Etienne v Wolfsburg
There’s a tight looking game in France on Thursday evening with Saint Etienne hosting German side Wolfsburg.
The hosts have seen back to back 1-0 scorelines with a win and a loss against Metz and Nimes respectively. At home they’re usually solid defensively and the return to fitness of centre half William Saliba will help their cause. However, they’ve not won this season at the Stade Geoffrey-Guichard and they’re really light at the top of the pitch.
Les Verts only have one recognised striker and that is Robert Beric who is hardly a serial goal-getter. They have been playing Whabi Khazri up front and he’s far from mobile, similar players in Romain Hamouma and Ryad Boudebouz are likely to help out going forward but there’s no goal threat there.
Wolfsburg have done well this season and remain unbeaten. A W3, D3, L0 record in the Bundesliga is a welcome start and they won their opening game in this competition at home to Oleksandria. They’ve utilised a 5-2-2-1 formation and it’s meant they’ve been pretty imperious at the back. Marcel Tisserand starred with a goal and clean sheet from centre back against Mainz at the weekend and the form Ingolstadt man looks tight at home alongside Bruma and Robert Knoche.
4 of Wolfsburg’s last 5 games have seen fewer than 3 goals land and they may come here and see a point as a decent result. I’m not expecting an end to end game here, both play with 5 at the back and play a compact midfield so it could become attritional. Under 2.5 goals has been priced up at 1.875 and I think that’s more than fair.
Asian Total Goals Betting Recommendation: Under 2.50 goals at 1.875
Ferencvaros v Ludogorets
One of the lesser looked at games interests me as Hungarian side Ferencvaros host Bulgarians Ludogorets.
The pair are in an open looking group along with CSKA Moscow and Espanyol, both of whom have started the season under par. I get the feeling group H could go down to the wire with all sides in with a shout of reaching the knockout stages.
Ludogorets walloped CSKA 5-1 on matchday 1 and I think teams on the continent tend to underrate them. In their native league teams seem to sit back in a defensive shape and that makes it tougher for The Eagles and usually lends its self to being a relatively low scoring game. They thrive when games open up and they can play on the break which I think could be the case here.
Budapest based Ferencvaros have been strong this season with just one defeat to their name. They will have been delighted with a point on matchday 1 away at Espanyol and you feel they’ll try and make these home games count.
They’ve scored in every league game this season and I don’t think there’s much between the two leagues in terms of quality. I can see a game where both sides are in form and will fancy their chances of winning. Over 2.25 goals has been quoted at 1.875 and I don’t mind that. It should be an entertaining and intriguing watch.
Asian Total Goals Betting Recommendation: Over 2.25 goals at 1.875
Feyenoord v Porto
We will stick with the goal markets again as Dutch giants Feyenoord host Porto. Feyenoord don’t have a great squad compared to what they have had in the past few years, the title winning campaign led by Giovanni Van Bronckhorst seems a million miles away now. Robin Van Persie has departed, as has Tony De Vilhelna who has signed for Krasnodar in Russia. Swede Sam Larsson is now showing his class after impressing for Herenveen a few seasons ago, he will bring craft and creativity going forward, he’s also managed to notch 3 goals in his 5 appearances this season.
At the back there are worries for the Rotterdam club. They’ve recently conceded 3 against Emmen and AZ whilst conceding 2 against Den Haag also. That being said they’ve been much more proficient going forward and come into this clash of the back of a 5-1 thrashing of Twente.
They also scored 3 against Emmen and Den Haag and that’s seen over 2.5 goals cop comfortably in 4 of their last 5 competitive games. Being at home they’ll be urged to take the game to Porto in front of their own fans at the atmospheric bowl that is De Kuip. Dutch sides are usually more attack minded and goals tend to flow when they’re involved.
Porto are in strong form themselves and have won 8 on the bounce to start the season. I’m not surprised they’re strong favourites here at 2.150 to win and given their current record I couldn’t put anyone off that punt. Tiquinho Soares has started the campaign well and Moussa Marega always poses a threat in front of goal. Ze Luis has come in from Spartak Moscow in the summer and he too has started the season in frightening form.
However, I do think Feyenoord can pose a threat going forward and we should get goals at both ends. Over 2.5 goals is available at 1.875 and with one side in form and the other scoring plenty I think it’s worthy of a play.
Asian Total Goals Betting Recommendation: Over 2.50 goals at 1.875
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