H. Beer Sheva – D. Zagreb FREE PICKS
The Champions League is still far away for the Croatian champion Dinamo Zagreb, but the third heat is a certainty. The home game against the Israeli champion Hapoel Beer Sheva was won with 5-0, making the return a formality.
Hapoel Beer Sheva:
Hapoel Beer Sheva last season won the best team of Israel for the third time in a row. In this capacity, the team of trainer Barak Bakhar has already made three attempts to reach the group stage of the Champions League via the qualifying tournament. The previous two attempts failed and after the hard beating in Zagreb last week it is almost certain that we will not find an Israeli team this season in the Champions League.
In the group stage of the Europa League Beer Sheva has been present for two years in a row. In the 2016/2017 season, the group stage of the Europa League was reached after a defeat in the last qualifying round of the Champions League against Celtic. In it a real stunt was realized: in a group with Internazionale, Southampton and Sparta Prague, the team finished second.
Beer Sheva could not repeat this trick last season. In a group with Steaua Bucharest, Lugano and Viktoria Plzen, the team finished last.
The most famous player among the Israelis is Ben Sahar. The striker came out in the Netherlands for both the Graafschap and Willem II. Left back Samuel Scheimann (including Excelsior) has a history in the Netherlands.
In Croatia there is only one team that distributes the sheets and that is the team from the capital. In eleven of the last twelve season, Dinamo Zagreb captured the Croatian title. Only in 2017, it had to leave the title to HNK Rijeka.
In Europe, Zagreb is usually a lot less successful. In the years that it knows how to qualify for the group stage of the Champions League, it often serves as cannon fodder. In the season 2016/2017, for example, no point was achieved and no goal was scored. In the 2015/2016 season, the team achieved three points, in the season 2012/2013 only one and the 2011/2012 season zero points. This was the notorious season in which Olympique Lyon passed at the expense of Ajax thanks to a 7-1 victory over the Croatian team in the last round. Dinamo finished that year with a goal difference of 3-22.
This season, the team of trainer Nenad Bjelica is in any case assured of the group stage of the Europa League thanks to a 5-0 victory in the first leg. Two goals came in the name of the Macedonian captain Arijan Ademi. The other three goals were scored by Armin Hodzic, Izet Hajrovic and Mislav Orsic.
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