Sporting Lisbon welcome Athletic Bilbao to Estadio Jose Alvalade for the first leg of their Europa League semi-final on Thursday night and there is little to choose between the two in the match odds. Sporting are priced 8/5 and Bilbao are 7/4, with the draw looking tempting at 9/4 with Paddy Power.
Athletic have the advantage of playing the second leg at home next week and they are 1/2 on to qualify for the final, where it would be an all-Spanish affair against either Valencia or Atletico Madrid.
Sporting are not to be underestimated though as the Portuguese side head into the match on an 11 match unbeaten run at home in Europe. They are 6/4 to make it through to the final and they have already upset the odds in the competition when they ousted Premier League title challengers Manchester City in the last-sixteen.
Furthermore, Sporting are unbeaten in 17 matches at home in all competitions, including a 1-0 win over City and victory over Benfica in the Portuguese League last time out. They may only be fourth in the Portuguese table but, like Bilbao, they have saved their best for the Europa League this season. Striker Ricky van Wolfswinkel has been particularly impressive, scoring five timesÂ in Europe and he is 11/2 to score first on Thursday.
Sporting have tended to start matches quickly, not least when going 2-0 up against Man City before losing 3-2 at the Etihad recently, and the double result of a half-time Sporting win and full-time draw can be backed at tempting odds of 12/1. Meanwhile, there have been six penalties in Sporting's last eight games and a penalty being awarded in Thursday's match is available at 2/1 with PaddyPower.
It is defensively that Sporting have been most impressive though as five of their last six games have gone under 2.5 and under 2.5 is 4/5 on this week. Their defence will be thoroughly tested by Bilbao, who have scored seven in their last two European away games.
Fernando Llorente is the main threat for the Spanish side as he is 9/2 to score last after scoring four goals in his last four Europa League games and three in his last three in La Liga. Bilbao are struggling inÂ seventh place in La Liga after winning just two of their last nine in all competitions but they have saved their very best for the Europa League.
They are unbeaten in five matches in Europe and have won four of their last six away in the competition, including victory at Manchester United. However, they have won just one of five away in all competitions and they might just have to settle with a draw this week, with the correct score of 1-1 available at 5/1 and the score draw can be backed at 16/5 with Paddy Power.
Sporting Lisbon v Athletic Bilbao Form
Check the season's statistics for both Sporting Lisbon and Athletic Bilbao, plus the odds ahead of Thursday's match.
Sporting Lisbon v Athletic Bilbao Tips
Tip #1: Score draw @ 16/5 with Paddy Power.
Tip #2: Fernando Llorente to score last @ 9/2 with Paddy Power.
Tip #3: Double result of a half-time Sporting win and full-time draw @ 12/1 with Paddy Power.
8/5 Sporting Lisbon
7/4 Athletic Bilbao
To Qualify Odds
6/4 Sporting Lisbon
1/2 Athletic Bilbao
Correct Score Odds
15/2 Sporting Lisbon 1-0
11/1 Sporting Lisbon 2-0
17/2 Sporting Lisbon 2-1
8/1 Draw 0-0
5/1 Draw 1-1
11/1 Draw 2-2
15/2 Athletic Bilbao 1-0
12/1 Athletic Bilbao 2-0
17/2 Athletic Bilbao 2-1
First Goalscorer Odds
9/2 Fernando Llorente
11/2 Ricky van Wolfswinkel
7/1 Diego Rubio
15/2 Gaizka Toquero
15/2 No Goalscorer
8/1 Matias Fernandez
9/1 Ibai Gomez
9/1 Iker Muniain
10/1 Sebastian Ribas
10/1 Markel Susaeta
Odds supplied by PaddyPower.com, who provide over 100 betting markets, including live betting in-running, for both Europa League semi-finals.
|Back inform Everton to frustrate Man Utd at Goodison Park|
Mata Tipped To Score
|Bournemouth v Bolton Odds Free Scoring Cherries Can Move Another Step Towards Promotion|
Squeaky Bum Time In The Race For The Premier League
|Super 6 Betting Six Premier League fixtures to sink your teeth into on Saturday|
Back 4 Wins And 2 Draws
|Score Draw Looks The Bet In Tight Arsenal v Chelsea Match|
Premier League Top Two Meet In Key Super Sunday Clash
|Manchester City face tough test against a rejuvenated Aston Villa|
Back Benteke To Score
|Brighton v Watford Odds The Hornets could seal promotion to the Premier League on Saturday|
If They Win And Other Results Go Their Way
|Serie A Treble Bet Highlighted By Juventus Turin Derby Success|
Lazio And Fiorentina Should Record Important Wins
|Back a draw between Southampton and Tottenham on Mauricio Pochettinos return to St Marys|
Both Teams Fighting For Top-6 Finish
|Real Madrid can make it five league wins in a row in the latest La Liga Treble Bet|
Real Sociedad & Sevilla Also Included
|PSG and Monaco star in our cracking Ligue 1 best bets treble|
Lyon Can Edge Past Reims On Sunday Night
|Chelsea V Barcelona Odds Back Messi And Drogba To Score At Stamford Bridge|
Barca start favourites for semi final first leg
|Bayern Munich V Real Madrid Odds Back A Draw In The First Leg Betting|
Ronaldo favourite to score first at the Allianz Arena
|FA Cup Final Odds Chelsea Favourites To Beat Liverpool At Wembley|
Chelsea make their fourth FA Cup final appearance in six years
|Arsenal V Wigan Betting Back Theo Walcott To Score First At The Emirates|
Arsenal odds on favourites for league clash
|Man Utd V Aston Villa Betting Reds Odds On Favourites To Seal A Big Win|
Villa have won once in last 26 visits to Old Trafford
|Bournemouth V Bolton Odds Free Scoring Cherries Can Move Another Step Towards Promotion|
Squeaky Bum Time In The Race For The Premier League
Those looking for some online casino entertainment ought to check out all the latest UK Casino Sign Up offers from the top operators including 32Red and many of the sports betting casinos.
There is excellent information, should you be interested in playing online blackjack, roulette, the best progressives or slots - Online Casino Betting with the best introductory offers