Prediction and odds for the game: Shkendija 79 (15/1) v Tottenham (1/7)
We are backing both teams to score at odds of 13/8
When: Thursday, 24th September 2020, Kick-off 19:00
Where: The Ecolog Arena
On Thursday night, Shkendija 79 of North Macedonia host Tottenham in the third qualifying round of the Europa League. The home team are massive underdogs in this clash.
The team from North Macedonia head into this game on a good run of form. In fact, Shkendija are unbeaten in their eight competitive games this season, including recording six wins. Their decent recent form has helped the home side to the top of the North Macedonia top-flight table.
The home team are highly experienced in the earlier stages of the Europa League. However, before this season, they had a poor record in Europe’s secondary competition. Victories over Sumqayit of Azerbaijan and Romanian outfit Botosani ended a winless of six games in the Europa League for the home side. To make matters worse they had also suffered five defeats in those six winless matches in Europe’s secondary competition.
They have a mixed recent home record in the Europa League, as they have lost their last three matches on home soil in the competition. Before the defeats to Milan, Rosenberg and Dudelange they had recorded three straight home wins in the competition.
The visitors were due to play Leyton Orient on Tuesday night, but the game was postponed due to several Orient’s players testing positive for COVID-19. That means that Spurs players should be slightly fresher than if any of them featured in the Carabao Cup. However, it remains to be seen if Jose Mourinho decides to field a strong team or not in this clash. On paper, it looks a comfortable game.
The team from north London will be looking to avoid any complacency, though, as the home team are unlikely to be easy opponents. Spurs bounced back from their opening day defeat by Everton by recording a 2-1 win at Lokomotiv Plovdiv in the last round before hammering Southampton 5-2 at St Mary’s. Heung-Min Son was the star of the show on the south coast scoring four times.
Tottenham don’t have a great record in this competition of late, as the win over Plovdiv was only their second victory in seven Europa League outings. The visitors have also won just twice in their last nine away games in the competition. Their recent games in the Europa League have been relatively low-scoring, with under 2.5 goals scored in six of their previous nine matches.
There is very little value in the away win in this clash. Therefore, our fall back position is usually the goals market. We are backing both teams to score, as the home side has scored in all their eight games this season and Spurs seem to have found their shooting boots. The other bet we are backing is over 2.5 goals scored, which is for similar reasons as above.
Verdict: We are backing both teams to score at odds of 13/8 and over 2.5 goals scored at odds of 1/2 (All odds are taken from Bet365)
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