Europa League Trends Suggest Ostersunds Can Make Life Difficult For Arsenal
Arsenal will face a test of their dubious mettle when they head to the bitterly cold Jamtkraft Arena for the first leg of their Europa League last-32 clash with Swedish side Ostersunds on Thursday night...
- Ostersunds finished 5th in the Swedish Allsvenskan last season and their new domestic campaign starts on 1st April
- Ostersunds are unbeaten in six European fixtures at home - Won Five, Drawn One
- Arsenal have won one of their past nine away games in all competitions - Drawn Four, Lost Four
|Thursday 15th February - 6.00pm||Odds||Won/Lost||Bet|
|Ostersunds v Arsenal|
|Tips||Under 2.5 goals Best Bet||@ 23 / 20|
The Rise Of Ostersunds
The rise of Ostersunds has been well documented as their English manager, Graham Potter, has taken them from the fourth tier of Swedish football to Swedish Cup glory and into the knockout stages of the Europa League during the past seven years.
Roared on by a small but passionate crowd of 9,000 on home soil, Ostersunds have already knocked Galatasaray out of the Europa League, while they beat Hertha Berlin and drew with Athletic Bilbao en route to finishing runners up in Group J.
The Swedish outfit are 6/1 to cause another upset (William Hill) and they are unbeaten in their six European matches at the Jamtkraft Arena, winning five and drawing one.
*Odds correct as of 14th Feb, 13:12. Odds are subject to change.
Lack Of Goals
Ostersunds kept five clean sheets in their six European home games and five of those went under 2.5 goals.
Thursday's match to produce two goals or fewer looks like a very decent bet (23/20 with Bet Victor) as Arsenal have been unconvincing on the road, winning one of their past nine away matches in all competitions, and they won't relish the cold conditions this week.
Arsene Wenger has previously fielded a weakened team in this competition but he will go strong with his team selection in Sweden as winning the Europa League offers a viable route into next season's Champions League.
With the Gunners sixth and a daunting seven points adrift of the top-four in the Premier League, as well as out of the FA Cup, they need a morale-boosting win in this first leg and they are 4/9 favourites (Hills).
However, they look to be short of firepower as Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is ineligible and Alexandre Lacazette is injured, while the in-form Aaron Ramsey is a major doubt. Olivier Giroud and Theo Walcott have moved on to pastures new, leaving Arsenal relying on Danny Welbeck for goals.
It won't be easy but Arsenal should win, albeit Ostersunds are capable of making life very difficult.
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