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Athletic Club vs Genk predictions, betting tips & match preview

  • 18:00
  • Expired
  • San Mames Barria
Athletic Bilbao
Genk

Athletic Bilbao vs Genk Predictions

A 2-0 defeat in Belgium last time out left Athletic bottom of this group. The table is incredibly tight heading into the second half of fixtures, so a win has them right back in contention to qualify for the next round. That would have been the La Liga side’s minimum expectation going into this group. That makes a victory here hugely important for the hosts.

Genk are top of the group heading into this game. Their 2-0 win over Athletic put them in control, but can they keep hold of first place with a result in Bilbao? The hosts are favourites, but their defensive problems could cost them three crucial points this week.

Athletic have conceded 1.3 goals per game this season, while they’ve yet to manage a home league clean sheet. They are a high scoring side going forward, having found the net in 90% of the league matches they’ve played. They score 1.8 times per game on average. While Genk will be confident of getting on the score sheet, they need to worry about keeping things tight at the back. That’s not something they’re usually able to do.

The Belgian side need a better defensive display than their last away European game. They travelled to Rapid Vienna in this group, and they ended up conceding twice in a very entertaining game. If the visitors are that open here, this will certainly be an exciting encounter. Athletic are the perfect side to take advantage of such an open defence.

Genk’s domestic defensive record isn’t that impressive either. They’ve conceded 1.83 times per away game this term, and they’ve lost 67% of their matches on the road. Their results this season average three goals in total, so we should expect a high scoring game. Don’t go expecting a clean sheet from the visitors, they’ve kept one in just 17% of their away trips in the Belgian league.

On the bright side, Genk have scored twice or more in their last six Europa League games. Athletic have conceded in their last seven games, and that run should continue here. The Spaniards have conceded from 27% of the shots they’ve faced in Europe so far. The visitors have a slightly better record, letting in a goal from 15% of the shots they face.

Athletic have seen both sides score in 80% of their league games so far. We’re backing another high scoring encounter here based on their recent form, so both teams to score is our tip at 19/20 with bet365.

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