Celtic v Ferencvaros
Celtic’s Europa League campaign already looks in tatters after 4-3 and 4-0 defeats to Real Betis and Bayer Leverkusen respectively, with Ferencvaros also without a point having lost 2-1 to the German outfit on matchday one and then 3-1 to the Spanish side. This is a must-win clash for both sides then, and the prognosis for goals appears strong.
Celtic have only failed to score in three of 19 competitive matches under Ange Postecoglou to date, with two of those coming against quality outfits Ranges and Leverkusen. The Hoops have been prolific scorers on home turf in particular, netting at least three times in six of 10 fixtures, though as with last season, the defence has struggled to shut their opponents out.
Celtic are only W4-D1-L5 across their past 10 matches and only have three clean sheets from these. Meanwhile, both teams have scored in 11 of Ferencvaros’ past 16 matches in all competitions going back to late July, with all three of their four clean sheets coming domestically.
In Europe, both sides have scored in 11 of Celtic’s past 14 outings, as nine of these games featured a minimum of four goals. There have been at least three goals in 15 of Ferencvaros’ 20 European matches since the start of last season, with both teams scoring on 13 occasions.
BOTH TEAMS TO SCORE
Spartak Moscow v Leicester
After a patchy start to the season, Leicester will be looking to build on their win over Man Utd at the weekend and need to make up ground fast in Group C. They’ve only taken a single point from two games so far, and although the first saw them draw with a Napoli side that have won all eight of their Serie A matches this term, a defeat on the road to Legia Warsaw has left qualification an uphill task.
The Foxes have only claimed victory once in their past seven Europa League games now with that coming at the King Power, including stalemates on the road to Sporting Braga and Slavia Prague, as well as another defeat away to Zorya Luhansk. Their only victories on their travels this season have come over rock-bottom Norwich and Millwall in the League Cup, also suffering defeats to West Ham and Brighton, while throwing away a two-goal lead to draw at Crystal Palace.
Spartak Moscow suffered defeat on the opening day hosting group leaders Legia Warsaw, but threw a spanner in the works with a victory away to Napoli. Still, they hardly convince themselves with seven defeats from their past 10 outings in Europe, while they’ve won just two of their past 11 on home turf in the Europa League or Champions League.
Although Leicester are scoring goals, registering at least twice in four of their last five outings, they’ve only managed a single clean sheet from their past 10 matches now, coming against Millwall. With Wesley Fofana, Wilfried Ndidi and James Justin all sidelined, and key man Jonny Evans a major doubt having suffered cramp at the weekend, their defensive troubles appear set to continue.
BOTH TEAMS TO SCORE
Rangers v Brondby
Rangers find themselves bottom of Group A, one point behind Brondby and four adrift of second-placed Sparta Prague. Anything but a win here would put them on the brink of an early exit, but they’ve struggled to find top form during the current campaign.
The Gers have only won one of their past 10 fixtures by more than a single strike, with eight of these games containing a maximum of two goals. At Ibrox alone, six of their last seven have featured fewer than three goals. Each of their last four in Europe have also gone under that threshold, with a combined output of four strikes across these games, so this doesn’t look like being an enthralling affair.
Although Brondby have seen a number of high-scoring matches in recent European matches, these have come almost exclusively in qualifying rounds against largely sub-standard opposition as they last qualified for the group stages back in 2005/06. A goalless stalemate with Sparta Prague on matchday one was followed by a 3-0 defeat to group leaders Lyon, but without a goal so far, they should struggle to carve out too many opportunities at Ibrox.
UNDER 2.5 GOALS
West Ham v KRC Genk
West Ham are an impressive W7-D2-L2 this season so far, with one of those defeats inflicted by Man Utd and the other coming to a spirited Brentford side as they conceded in the 94th minute. They appear comfortable in Group H having extracted maximum points from both Dinamo Zagreb and Rapid Vienna, each coming by 2-0 scorelines, and will expect to extend their lead at the top.
Genk shaded a narrow victory on the opening day against the Austrian outfit, but their form has since evaporated and they head into this fixture with four defeats from their past five matches, during which time they’ve conceded 12 goals. That includes a 3-0 defeat to Dinamo Zagreb in their last Europa League game, leaving them with nine defeats from their past 11 in Europe, even if that did include encounters with Napoli and Liverpool in last season’s Champions League. Still, having conceded at least twice in each of those losses, and as many as four goals on five occasions, the Hammers should enjoy a comfortable evening.
TOTAL WEST HAM GOALS OVER 1.5