Born in the south east of Ireland, Simon put his life-long love of football to good use when he started a successful independent blog in 2010. That opened up an alternative route to a career in journalism, and having had work published across a number of sites and publications, Simon joined the staff at Spotlight Sports Group in 2018.
The 2018/19 Europa League resumes on this week with the second legs of the Round of 32 double-headers scheduled to be played on Wednesday and Thursday.
With the majority of the two-legged ties on a knife edge, attackers across the continent will be hoping to produce game-defining moments to help fire their team into the Last 16 of the Europa League.
As always, the bookmakers have countless exciting and potentially lucrative Europa League markets available for punters looking to dip their toes into those warm continental waters.
This week, FST are zeroing in on the UEL Anytime Goalscorer markets, and with 15 of the Round of 32 second-leg fixtures scheduled to be played on Thursday, we have plenty of options to consider.
With that in mind, let’s take a more detailed look at a few of the players worth keeping an eye on in the UEL Anytime Goalscorer markets this week:
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (ARSENAL vs BATE Borisov) – 4/11
With Arsenal trailing BATE 1-0 from the first leg, Unai Emery will almost certainly restore some of the club’s bigger names to the starting line-up in an attempt to turn the tie on its head.
The Gunners’ leading scorer this season, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, was introduced as a second half substitute in Belarus a week ago with Arsenal trailing, though the 29-year old should feature from the start in the second leg.
Aubameyang has scored 17 times for Arsenal in just 25 competitive starts this term and the Gabon international looks set to spearhead the Gunners attack on Thursday in the absence of the suspended Alexandre Lacazette.
With Arsenal is desperate need of goals, Aubameyang won’t be short on service this week, and the former Dortmund star is devastatingly clinical.
Fredrik Gulbrandsen (RED BULL SALZBURG vs Club Brugge) – 5/4
Runaway Austrian Bundesliga leaders Red Bull Salzburg lead for a large chunk of their Round of 32 first leg tie in Belgium against Club Brugge last week.
Salzburg were eventually undone by 2 second half goals from the hosts, though their away goal they secured could prove vital.
Fredrik Gulbrandsen didn’t have the best of times in Brugge on a rare off-night in the Europa League for the Norwegian striker. The 26-year old had been in sparkling form in the tournament before that, netting 4 goals in 4 Europa League starts for Die Roten Bullen.
Gulbrandsen will be eager to set the record straight after a poor first leg showing in Belgium, and with Salzburg expected to be on the front foot from the off, the centre-forward looks a great bet to register.
Lautaro Martínez (INTER MILAN vs Rapid Vienna) – 20/21
21-year old Argentinean striker Lautaro Martínez has yet to fully establish himself as a first team regular at Inter, following his transfer to Italy last summer.
Martinez has started only 6 times in Serie A for the Italian giants, and the forward’s Champions League involvement was restricted to just 3 appearances totalling 53 minutes off the substitute’s bench.
However, it looks as though Martinez will be given a platform to shine in the Europa League by Inter manager Luciano Spalletti. The youngster started the club’s Round of 32 first leg in Austria against Rapid Vienna and took his opportunity with both hands by bagging the game’s only goal from the penalty spot.
Martinez will be at the sharp end of the Inter attack again this week, in what should be a relatively comfortably second leg at the San Siro. With the former Racing Club hitman keen to impress again, Martinez looks a great shout to grab a goal.
Olivier Giroud (CHELSEA vs Malmo) – 21/20
The often underutilized and underappreciated Olivier Giroud hasn’t started a Premier League game for goal-shy Chelsea since before the turn of the year.
The Frenchman has however, been something of a regular fixture in the Blues’ team in this season’s Europa League. The 32-year old has appeared in 6 of Chelsea’s games in the competition, scoring an impressive 5 times in the process.
Giroud struck 1 of those goals in Chelsea’s 2-1 win at Malmo last week, and the former Arsenal target-man will fancy his chances of adding to his continental tally in the second leg at Stamford Bridge on Thursday.
A fixture against a weak Malmo team represents a wonderful opportunity for a heavily criticised Chelsea to exorcise some demons, and Giroud will be hoping to be the man to add the finishing touches to their attacking play.
Haris Seferovic (BENFICA vs Galatasaray) – 5/4
Goal-hungry Benfica have been rattling the net with relentless accuracy over the past month. The Portuguese outfit have scored an eye-watering 26 times in their last 6 fixtures, 2 of which were registered in their 2-1 Round of 32 first leg victory in Turkey against Galatasaray.
Swiss international striker Haris Seferovic scored Benfica’s crucial second and winning goal in Istanbul that night, to take his personal recent haul to 7 goals in 6 appearances.
Seferovic is in the form of his life, and 2018/19 is already the most prolific campaign of his long-spanning club career. The 26-year old is on fire and he will be supremely confident of extending his hot scoring streak against Galatasaray on Thursday.
A 5-fold accumulator including all of our Anytime Goalscorer selections above pays out at a whopping 26/1 with bet365!! You can back that acca by clicking the banner below.
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