Following the draw for the Round of 16 Champions League fixtures was the Europa League and it didn’t deliver the easiest of games for the English sides!
The Europa League draw took place yesterday with 32 teams in the hat. The reason there are more games than in the Champions League next round is due to all the third-place teams from the competition joining the Europa League.
Unlike the Champions League, the fixtures are done in just a one week period. This is due to them having an extra round so they need to get more fixtures in. The first leg is on 20th February with the second one on 27th February. The only exception to this is Rangers who are playing the second leg on the 26th.
There are three English teams still in the competition, Man United, Wolves and Arsenal.
🔥 Round of 32 draw 🔥
— UEFA Europa League (@EuropaLeague) December 16, 2019
Wolves vs Espanyol
Even though they finished second in their group, Wolves go into this as the favourites. They have been playing some fantastic football in the Premier Leauge and have shown on their day they can beat anyone. This season in the Europa League they were only beaten once in the group and were unlucky not to finish top.
For Espanyol, its the opposite. They finished top of their group in the Europa League but in the La Liga, they are rock bottom. They have been beaten 11 times this season and their main aim will be to stay up. Wolves will be confident of beating this side and they are 4/11 to do so and go through. Espanyol though are no pushovers and that why they are at 2/1 with Betfred.
Wolves’ squad, however, is good enough to go all the way this season. With players like Neves, Moutinho, Jiminez and Traore they will give anyone a game. That is why they’re at 12/1 and could be worth a bet.
Olympiakos vs Arsenal
This will be a far tougher game for Arsenal than most expect. Olympiakos is a tough place to go, the fans make the ground a very hostile atmosphere. They finished third in a tough Champions League group and even managed a draw with Spurs along the way. The Greek side are also top of their league and haven’t lost any of their opening 14 games but are still priced at 9/4 to go through.
Arsenal, on the other hand, came top in their group but are in a poor run of form. Manager and three-time Europa League winner Unai Emery got sacked recently. They are looking to get a new manager and will have one in place by the time this fixture takes place. Arsenal squad though is far better than Olympiakos so it just depends on which Arsenal turns up for this one and at 1/3 on Betfred, they expect the best version. They got to the final last season so know what it takes to do so. At 13/2 to win it, they’re one of the favourites again this year.
Club Brugge vs Man United
Another side to come from the Champions League in this round, but it’s not Man United. The Belgian side didn’t win once in the competition but managed a 2-2 draw with Real Madrid. Brugge are eight points clear at the top of their league and are playing well. They understandably aren’t the favourites for this fixture though and that’s why they’re at 5/2 with United at 2/7.
United seem to be finding their form again but have shown how quickly they can lose it. Like Arsenal, it depends on what type of Man United turn up. Ole seems to have found his best team now but an injury to a key player like Rashford or McTominay could be very damaging. United will be set on trying to win this competition let alone just this game and at 11/2 they are a good price.