After the Champions League, the UEFA Europa League opens its doors again this week. In contrast to the premier class, the return games are already on the program a week later. In the duel between APOEL Nicosia and FC Basel, the last two representatives from their home country meet. In the following article we go into this game in detail, in our category Europa League tips the other knockout games are presented in more detail.
Both teams have been represented in the premier class again and again in recent years, but now have to bake smaller rolls. Even before the direct duel, the mood in the camp of both teams is not necessarily positive. However, the betting base odds comparison shows that bookmakers on the market see the traditional Swiss club as having a clear advantage when it comes to progress.
In Cyprus the starting point is a little different and the bookmakers expect a duel at eye level. Almost identical odds are offered between APOEL Nicosia and FC Basel. The game starts at 20 p.m. on Thursday evening at the GSP Stadium.
APOEL Nicosia has now won seven titles in a row in the domestic championship. However, this series could end this season. The 28-time master stumbles tremendously and simply does not come to rest. This season alone there have been four (!) Different head coaches among the Cypriots.
The German Thomas Doll followed for almost four months (8-5-4 balance sheet) before the Norwegian Kare Ingebrigtsen took over after Christmas.
After four wins, two draws and four defeats, his term in office ended after only 45 days. The Greek Marinos Ouzounidis – who ended his player career at APOEL in 2003 and was already a coach between 2006 and 2009 – has been back in office for a week.
On his debut, there was a clear 4-1 home victory against the table neighbor Apollon Limassol (fourth). After the recent failures, this successful dress rehearsal was extremely important.
The foundation stone for possible progress must be laid in front of a home audience. So far, APOEL Nicosia has had an 8-1-5 home record in the Europa League. What is really understandable for us is the fact that the best bookmakers on the market between APOEL Nicosia and FC Basel only offer slightly higher betting odds for the home win tip, but not.
It was not to be expected after the first two group games that the team was still in the Europa League. However, the team managed the turnaround and thanks to ten points from the four remaining games, APOEL Nicosia still secured second place behind FC Sevilla. In the first leg against Basel, the Cypriots have to do without defender Vujadin Savic due to a yellow card suspension.
While APOEL Nicosia exchanges the coach at regular intervals, the club management at FC Basel continues to hold on to Marcel Koller. An extension of the expiring contract at the end of the season would be a big surprise, as things stand – unless FC Basel is returning to the throne of Swiss football. In this case the contract would be extended automatically.
However, the FCB fans have to be quite optimistic to believe in the championship based on recent knowledge. So far, 2020 has not turned out as desired. FC Basel have lost three of the four previous competitive games after the winter break.
After the two top games against the Young Boys and St. Gallen, the clear 4-0 win at FC Zurich seemed to be a relief. But the positive mood was short-lived because the dress rehearsal for the Europa League duel went against FC Thun at home against the rear. At 0: 1 it set the next low blow.
The only positive thing last weekend: the two leaders from Bern and Sankt Gallen also lost, so our table base betting service is still only five points behind the top. Koller himself seemed perplexed at the interview and gave the feeling that he himself was no longer convinced that he would be in office for a long time.
While there were ups and downs for FC Basel on the national stage, the course on the international stage was relatively successful. Although the Bebbis at LASK failed in the Champions League qualification, the Europa League group stage was competently contested and Basel won the group with 13 points. Nevertheless, Basel have won only two of the last eight away games on the international stage.
The favorite role in this knockout duel may be understandable, due to the recent performance and the weak away record, we do not recommend making a forecast for the guests in the duel between APOEL Nicosia and FC Basel. The risk here is clearly too great for us personally.