TOP spot in Group H has already been secured for Everton. So how can we profit from their dead-rubber clash with Krasnodar on Thursday night? Mark O’Haire (@MarkOHaire) explores the best bets available.
Everton v Krasnodar | Thursday 20.05 | ITV 4
Already guaranteed top spot in Group H and qualification as a seeded team into the knockout stages of the Europa League, Everton boss Roberto Martinez is expected to field a host of youngsters in Thursday’s fixture.
The Toffees win away at Wolfsburg gave them an unassailable four-point advantage at the top of the tree allowing the Spaniard to rotate his squad and with that in mind, it may pay to oppose the Merseysiders.
Everton have won just four of their nine games at Goodison Park in 2014/15 and although they’re unbeaten in five on home soil, their much-changed side could be in for a tougher evening than the bookmakers believe.
Youngsters Tyias Browning, Luke Garbutt, Ryan Ledson and Kieron Dowell are in line to face the Russians who sit fourth in their domestic league after a 4-0 walloping at table-topping Zenit St Petersburg last weekend.
Krasnodar were also on the receiving end of a 5-1 thrashing when they went to Wolfsburg in this competition and their away record is far from inspiring – W1-D1-L4 in their last 6 road games.
However, Aleh Konanaw’s charges have proved a tough nut to crack. The Bulls got to the half-time interval without a goal conceded against Lille or Wolfsburg in their two previous Europa League away days and that’s been a common theme in their away matches back home.
The visitors have only been behind after 45 minutes in one of their nine Russian Premier League games when playing away, leaking just twice. With Everton likely to ring the changes, it could be worth opposing the hosts to score a first-half goal.
Everton v Krasnodar – Everton to score a first-half goal ‘No’ (17/20 William Hill)