FC Basel vs Eintracht Frankfurt | Thursday 6th August 2020, 20:00 | BT Sport
It is very much advantage Basel in this Europa League Round of 16 second leg tie having secured a 3-0 first leg lead all the way back in March. E
intracht Frankfurt face a daunting task of having to overturn such a margin, which is arguably made even more tougher considering their domestic season finished just over a month ago. On the flip side, they’ll be fresh, whereas Basel this will be Basel’s 11th game since the start of last month.
One positive for the German outfit is that they did at least finish the Bundesliga campaign in decent nick. They would lose just once in their last eight, and five were victories. This included two wins by a three-goal margin, which will serve as great preparation for the trip to Switzerland. They’d have probably wanted this game to arrive much sooner to make the most of that momentum, but what they need to do is at least obvious to score.
It is perhaps less obvious for Basel in a funny way as it does pose the question of exactly how do they approach this second leg? Considering they’ve generally conceded goals for fun this season, which ultimately cost them in the Swiss Super League title race, they’ve kept a clean sheet in four of their last six, and of course in the first leg in Germany, too.
If Basel can sort out their defence long-term then they’ll become a domestic force again, and maybe shock a few in Europe. They certainly shocked everyone with their first leg success, but they probably caught Frankfurt at the right time as they had just been smashed by Bayern Munich and would then lose their next two after facing Basel.
Eintracht Frankfurt To Score First (20/21 Boylesports)
Frankfurt boss Adi Hütter will have been especially hurt by the first leg demise considering he is a former Young Boys manager; a big rival of Basel. There is a bit of a Swiss vibe going on in the Frankfurt squad too, so motivation won’t be an issue and they’ll be keen to make a bit of history against all the odds. Hütter has been speaking how they aim to “make the impossible possible”, but the reality is they’re right up against it.
The message for the past month at Frankfurt will undoubtedly be about the need for an early goal in this clash. That will set up a few fears in the Basel ranks and ultimately give the German club the boost they need. They generally started their Bundesliga away games quite slowly, which isn’t ideal, but circumstances have changed meaning they are energised for this and there may be a few heavy legs in the Basel ranks.
I’ll take a punt at Frankfurt To Score First at 20/21 (Boylesports), as I’m just not sure how Basel will play this.
Over 1.5 First Half Goals (17/11 Sport Nation)
I actually like the look of goals in the first half as I just don’t see Frankfurt taking the mentality of making sure they don’t concede first, knowing that will kill off the tie realistically. I fancy them to take some risks from the very start, and games involving them are generally end-to-end affairs, and the same applies to Basel.
Frankfurt ended their league campaign joint-top in relation to matches seeing both teams score, and that is all you need to know. The BTTS price is understandably on the skinny side, but the 17/11 (Sport Nation) on offer for Over 1.5 First Half Goals just keeps catching my eye and I just see it happening.
Frankfurt can’t afford to sit around, and I fancy them to score in the first half at least once, and maybe even a second, but conceding first could spark Basel into life, too.
Penalty In Match (17/10 Unibet)
A final play is a recommendation of Penalty In Match at 17/10 (Unibet).
This match will be officiated by Spaniard Antonio Mateu, and looking at his numbers he seems to avoid spot kicks quite when venturing away from his normal La Liga scene. He has officiated seven UEFA Champions League and UEFA Europa League contests in the current season, and four penalties were awarded.
I would have recommended a few cards in this game too but no markets were available at the time of writing, so I wouldn’t put you off in that regard either. There was also a penalty awarded in the first leg, too, so at the price I think this is worth a punt.
FC Basel v Frankfurt – Eintracht Frankfurt To Score First (20/21 Boyle Sports)
FC Basel v EintrachtFrankfurt – Over 1.5 First Half Goals (17/11 Sport Nation)
FC Basel v Eintracht Frankfurt – Penalty In Match (17/10 Unibet)