BOOKINGS man Gavin Murphy (@GamePlanGavin) reckons there’s card value in Thursday’s Europa League.
Fola Esch v Aberdeen | Thursday 17:30 | BT Sport Extra
Europa League qualifiers continue on Thursday evening as Aberdeen take a 3-1 first leg lead to Luxembourg as they tackle Fola Esch. It was a feisty affair in the first leg at Pitodrie as two late goals gave the Dons a crucial buffer.
Derek McInnes’ troops had 25 shots so were well worth their victory. Fola only committed 11 fouls so to get seven cards suggests a very fussy referee.
That will certainly not be the case tonight as Norwegian whisteblower Ola Hobber Nilsen is in charge. Regular readers of this column will know that Scandinavian officials are far more lenient than other European officials.
Nilsen averages just 2.5 cards per game during his career so far. The 30 year old showed two yellows in the qualification phase last season in the encounter between Europa FC and Bratislava. He averaged 2.06 cards per game in 2015/16. I can’t recall every seeing stats that low in all my years covering referees.
Fola played Gothenburg at home in this competition in 2014 in a match they lost 2-0 and zero cards were shown that day by another Scandinavian referee, Dane J. Kehlet.
If Aberdeen score early on then this tie is finished if it isn’t already. With a very lenient looking official in charge I’m backing under 40pts with Paddy Power at 6/4.
Fola Esch v Aberdeen – Under 40 Bookings Points (6/4 Paddy Power)