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FC Zurich vs Napoli Predictions

  • 20:00
  • Expired
  • Letzigrund
FC Zurich

      odds when tipped

      odds when tipped

      Tip Reasoning

      Zurich made relatively light work of advancing to this stage of the competition, as they finished Group A in second place on a comfortable 10 points. Having beaten the likes of Ludogorets and Leverkusen at this venue, Ludovic Magnin’s men ought to approach this fixture feeling confident.

      Even before a ball is kicked in this tie, Zurich are expected to struggle and rightly so. On their day, Napoli are good enough to rub shoulders with Europe’s best, though some of their efforts away from home in the group stages of the UCL weren’t great, while Zurich showed during the group stages of this competition that they can get competitive on home soil.

      Attacking was often a problem for the Swiss outfit during the groups, even at home, as they clocked just 0.2 expected goals for against Ludogorets and just 0.79 against AEK. Such numbers do not bode well, though if we look at how they did when allowed to play on the break against Leverkusen, then it’s easy to feel that Thursday’s hosts can do well against an attack-minded Napoli side. When Leverkusen visited Stadion Letzigrund and played on the front foot, Zurich looked a real danger going forward, which is why they recorded a pleasing 2.17 expected goals for and scored three goals.

      In addition to their encouraging effort against Leverkusen, Zurich also defended well on their own patch during the groups. They conceded against both Leverkusen and Larnaca, but didn’t exactly get the rub of the green, while their underlying numbers suggest that they’re no mugs at the back. Zurich shipped an average of 0.56 expected goals at home during the groups, which tells us that they avoided surrendering chances left, right and centre.

      In the Champions League groups, Napoli were very up and down. On occasion, they looked like a dangerous side, such as when they beat Liverpool in Italy and drew with PSG in Paris, though they also looked somewhat ordinary at other times, especially when they went away and drew 0-0 with Red Star Belgrade. Given the quality in their side, they ought to have plenty to say in this tie, though they shouldn’t be expected to simply brush the hosts aside.

      In the betting, there is one selection that sticks out like a saw thumb and that is ‘Zurich to Score Over 0.5 Goals’. As we saw when they used the counter to good effect against Leverkusen in the groups, the likely open nature of this tie will suit the hosts down to the ground, while they’ve already shown that they’ve got the quality to put the ball in the net on their own patch. At the prices, backing the hosts, who scored an average of 1.67 goals at home during the groups, to maintain their 100% home scoring record in the Europa League this season is the way to go.

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