Atletico Madrid v Arsenal Predictions, Betting Tips and Previews
April 30, 2018
Wanda Metropolitano - Europa League
It’s all or nothing for Arsene Wenger in this second leg of the Europa League semi-final encounter between Arsenal and Atletico Madrid. After a 1-1 draw in the first leg, the Spanish outfit have the advantage.
Last week’s game was the first time the teams had met in a competitive fixture. After Sime Vrsaljko was sent off for two bookable offences inside the first 10 minutes, Arsenal struggled to break down the visitors until the hour mark. Alexandre Lacazette put the Gunners into the lead, but Antoine Griezmann netted a late equaliser for Diego Simeone’s side.
Former Chelsea striker Diego Costa is likely to be named in Atletico’s starting XI after remaining on the bench at the Emirates last Thursday. Another ex-Blue Filipe Luis has returned to light training after a broken leg but is unlikely to feature, while Juanfran and goalkeeper Jan Oblak are also expected to miss out through injury.
Europa League specialist Henrikh Mkhitaryan made his return from a knee problem in Arsenal’s defeat against Manchester United on Sunday, but went off late in the game after suffering a knock to the same joint. David Ospina and Alex Iwobi also picked up problems at Old Trafford, and could miss out along with Sead Kolasinac and Mohamed Elneny.
Atletico Madrid v Arsenal Preview and Predictions
Although the outgoing Arsenal boss is keen to avoid the narrative, European glory would be a fitting way to end his time in north London. However, Atletico Madrid have very different ideas ahead of this second leg, and they go into the contest as clear favourites.
Atletico still have a great chance of finishing as runners-up in La Liga, and with Barcelona still unbeaten in their domestic campaign, second place and the Europa League trophy would represent a decent enough season for Los Rojiblancos.
After going down to 10 men early on, Simeone’s side put in a dogged display and took advantage of a dreadful error from Laurent Koscielny to get their priceless away goal. That helps them to start this game as the odds-on favourites for the win at 3/4, while you can get 1/3 on Atleti to qualify.
Arsenal are 9/2 for the win, or 14/5 to qualify for the final in Lyon next month, although the end of Wenger’s reign is hardly going to plan. His last home European game ended in disappointment, as did his final trip to Old Trafford. With a high scoring draw taking the Gunners through, a stalemate on their first trip to the Wanda Metropolitano is priced at 14/5.
Griezmann to score and Atletico to win at 11/8
The French forward, who has 14 goals in his last 14 games, was rested for Atleti’s trip to Alaves on Sunday, and will be a major threat once again in this second leg.
1-1 draw at 7/1
All neutrals love extra-time and the potential for penalties, and this would certainly be a dramatic way to decide who goes on to face either Marseille or Red Bull Salzburg in the final.