Arsenal v FC Koln: Gunners Aiming for Positive Europa League Start
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As they start their European campaign in the unfamiliar surroundings of the Europa League, Arsenal fans may have an envious eye on Champions League matches this week but they know that this in an important competition.
Any piece of silverware is greatly accepted and as Manchester United found out last season, winning this competition provides a route back into the Champions League if the club finishes outside of the top four. That campaign begins on Thursday night with the visit of German side FC Koln and here’s what the bookies make of it all.
Arsenal go into this match as hot favourites and the best price from around the sportsbooks on a home win is 1/3 from William Hill and 10Bet. A draw on the night would currently come in at a best of 24/5 with MarathonBet while a victory for Koln is on offer at 10/1 with Winner Sports.
Arsenal’s away form in the Premier League this season is poor with two defeats on the road but in complete contrast the Gunners have won both their home matches. Over in Germany, Cologne have made the worst possible start, losing all three games and scoring just once.
Therefore, form and quality points clearly to a likely home win but if you can’t see any value in that 1/3 win price, let’s switch to the side markets for Thursday’s tie.
Individual Goal Scorers
First goal scorer betting is dominated by Arsenal players with three joint favourites to find the net first. Alexandre Lacazette is at a top price of 7/2 with BetFred while Olivier Giroud can be found at that same 7/2 figure with bet365.
Alexis Sanchez completes the quartet at 7/2 with Paddy Power but the obvious question is over who will start the game. Sanchez has been out of favour after reports emerged linking the Chilean with a move to Manchester City while Giroud is a frequent sub in the league.
Perhaps the anytime market might be a better solution where the tempter is Danny Welbeck at a best of 5/4 with bet365 and 32Red. Welbeck has scored three times in four matches this season and is our first pick of the night.
We can’t ignore the German side completely: Koln’s first mention in the opening goalscorer market goes to Jhon Cordoba, the Colombian international who joined from Mainz in the summer. Cordoba is at a top price of 14/1 with bet365 to open the scoring while his team mate Sehrou Guirassy is slightly further back at best odds of 15/1 with 888Sport.
Other Side Bets
Usually, one of the most common side bets and the first option to look for is Both Teams to Score which is listed for this match at 13/16 with 32Red and 888Sport. However, when you look at this Koln side and their struggles this season, it’s tough to see where the away goals will come from.
With the German team scoring just one goal in their opening three Bundesliga games, Arsenal to win to nil is going to be our next tip for this fixture and this is currently quoted at a best price of 31/25 with MarathonBet.
We feel that given the respective qualities of the two sides that it could be a comfortable night for Arsenal and with 1/3 on the table for the home win, there isn’t much to get excited about in the result betting. You could look for some enhanced odds offers closer to the game but so far, the bookmakers haven’t been too busy in this respect.
Alternatively, as we have done, you could assume that Arsenal will win it and look instead at the side betting options. Welbeck to score anytime plus Arsenal to win without conceding a goal were our original tips and we’ll round it off with a correct score of 3-0 in favour of the home side which can be backed at a top price of 8/1 with Paddy Power.
- Danny Welbeck to score anytime at 5/4 with bet365
- Arsenal to win to nil at 31/25 with MarathonBet
- Correct score of Arsenal 3 FC Koln 0 at 8/1 with Paddy Power