Marseille – Ath Bilbao Prediction & Picks (08.03.2018)



Olympique Marseille and Athletic Club meet at Stade Vélodrome, in a match for this phase of the UEFA Europa League (8th Finals). There is only record of 2 recent direct confrontations between these two teams: on 25-02-2016, which ended with a draw by (1-1), and on 18-02-2016, which ended with the victory of Athletic Club by ( 0-1). In this game the home factor may be decisive, since Olympique Marseille presents considerable differences in their results at home and as a visitor.

Olympique Marseille:

The home team reaches this stage of the UEFA Europa League (8th Finals) after a loss by (1-0) and a home win by (3-0) with Sporting Braga. This is a team that usually makes good use of the home advantage, stronger with the help of its supporters, since in the last 30 matches they register 5 wins, 5 draws and 5 losses in away matches, with 26 goals scored and 17 conceded; against 10 wins and 5 draws in their stadium, with 33 goals scored and 10 suffered. The team comes to this match after a draw at home with Nantes by (1-1). Olympique Marseille won 5 and tied 1 of their last 6 home matches for the UEFA Europa League.

For this competition, they have not lost any of the last 6 home matches. In 12 matches in this competition, they only won 1 comeback in 6 games in which they suffered the first goal. There is 1 period that stands out in the last 20 home matches for all competitions: they have suffered 5 of their 14 goals between minutes (0′-15 ‘).

The Olympic of Marseille leaves for this game with a tie to a ball against Nantes, totaling in this way the fourth game followed without winning in several competitions. In the previous tie, Marseille eliminated Braga, very much because of the victory in the first leg, 3-0. In this match at home, coach Rudi García must act in 4-2-3-1, privileging possession of the ball and organized, slow attacks, using the sides to create danger: Thauvin and Ocampos are the fastest players of the home team . Of note that Florian Thauvin is the best finalist of the Olympic of Marseille, with 18 goals scored in all competitions. For this game the coach can not count on Mitroglou, injured.

Ath Bilbao:

The visiting team reached this phase of the UEFA Europa League (8th Finals) after having eliminated Spartak Moscow, with a defeat by (1-2) at home and a win by (1-3) away in the previous round. This is a team that usually shows similar results, at home and abroad, so it is not affected by the home team, as in the last 30 matches they register 4 wins, 5 draws and 6 losses in away matches; against 5 wins, 7 draws and 3 losses at their stadium. The team comes to this match after a loss away with Sevilla by (2-0). In the last 6 away matches for the UEFA Europa League, Athletic Club won 3 and drew 3.

For this competition, they have not lost any of the last 6 away matches. Their attack has scored regularly, since they have scored goals in 8 of the last 10 matches for this competition. In 12 matches in this tournament, they suffered the first goal 4 times, but got the comeback in 2.

Athletic Bilbao is going through a less positive moment of the season and currently has only 2 wins in the last 10 matches played in several competitions. In the last match, Bilbao added a defeat in Sevilla’s territory, 2-0. Coach Cuco Ziganda usually plays with four players in the defensive sector, three in the middle and three in the offensive sector. It is important to emphasize that the visitors have gaps in the air play and in the defensive organization. Veteran Aritz Aduriz is the best scorer of Athletic Bilbao, with 18 goals scored. For this game the coach does not have Balenziaga, Muniain and Mikel Rico, all injured.

© Andrey

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