Athletic Bilbao vs Zilina Betting Tips

  • 18:45
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Athletic Bilbao

      Tip Reasoning

      The Basque side were in complete control last week in Slovakia when goals from Sabin and Kike Sola had them 2-0 up at the break and seemingly cruising. However perhaps with a weekend La Liga opener against Barcelona in mind, they fell apart in the 2nd half and Brazilian substitute Willian netted twice to guide Zilina to an unlikely 3-2 victory.

      It was a weakened side that Athletic fielded last week but it is likely to be much stronger this time around with Aritz Aduriz who netted 26 goals last season and already has four against European champions Barcelona this term likely to come in.

      Zilina don’t have any real European pedigree and their comeback was as much to do with Athletic losing focus as it was their own brilliance. They are unlikely to make the same mistake twice in the space of a week.

      Match fitness shouldn’t be a problem for the hosts as they’ve already been involved in 6 competitive matches this season and given they scored 4 at home to Barcelona less than a fortnight ago, they should be able to put a side like Zilina away fairly comfortably.

      Backing Athletic to win and there to be over 2.5 goals at 4/5 therefore looks a solid bet and is aided by the fact that you can’t rule out Zilina scoring at some point in the game.
      They will have taken confidence from their 3 second half goals in the first leg but having conceded 2 away goals themselves they surely won’t think they can just come here and defend for 90 minutes in the slim hope of securing a 0-0 draw.

      The result should be a fairly open game and Athletic have kept only 3 clean sheets in their last 10 Europa League home games at San Mames. They conceded 3 times at home twice last season in this competition so Zilina, who have scored in each of their last 20 competitive games, may well net here.

      However Bilbao’s attacking quality should still overpower them and 3-1 therefore looks a good correct scoreline bet in favour of the home side at odds of 11/1.


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