Jan the man for Spurs

Ben Linfoot previews tonight's Europa League action and backs Jan Vertonghen to score first in Basle v Spurs.

Last Updated: 11/04/13 at 20:35 Post Comment

Vertonghen: Worth a bet for the first goal at 22/1

Vertonghen: Worth a bet for the first goal at 22/1

With four Europa League quarter-final second legs on Thursday night, three featuring Premier League teams, a few bets and a bit of channel hopping could be in order for many of us.

First up, Basle face Tottenham and it's evenly poised following a 2-2 first leg in North London where the Swiss side raced into a 2-0 lead.

Emmanuel Adebayor and Gylfi Sigurdsson got Spurs back in the tie that night and those two will be vital to their cause once again with Gareth Bale, Aaron Lennon and Jermain Defoe all missing.

With key players missing, it's going to be a tough task for Spurs as Basle are very solid at home. The Swiss team have not lost a match at home since last August, winning 12 of the 15 matches at St Jakob Park in that period.

Basle have also conceded only four goals in their last eight Europa League matches, but Spurs, of course, scored two of those and I do fancy Andre Villas-Boas' team to score in Switzerland.

Tottenham have scored in nine of their last 10 Europa League games and even with Bale out you have to fancy them to get on the scoresheet once again.

And the player that appeals most in the goalscorer markets is Jan Vertonghen who is priced up at 22/1 with bet365 to score first.

The centre-half has scored seven goals this season, five of them were Spurs' first goal (four of them the first in the match) and he'll be one of Tottenham's best finishers on the pitch at Basle with Bale and Defoe missing.

He looks worth a bet each-way for the first with bet365 going 1/3 the odds and unlimited places.

Over in Russia, the draw looks a big player in Rubin Kazan v Chelsea at 12/5.

Rafael Benitez has been a master at getting the right result in Europe throughout his managerial career and, 3-1 up from the first leg, a comfortable draw is all that is required here.

I think Benitez will set Chelsea up so they're extremely difficult to break down and I'd expect the Blues to knock the ball around between themselves whenever they can.

Goals should be at a premium - under 2.5 is understandably as short as 8/13 - with 0-0 and 1-1 big players in the correct score market.

All three of Rubin's home group games were played in Kazan and they won all three, including against Inter Milan, but the knockout matches have taken place in Moscow and without a hostile home crowd they're less of a threat.

However, wherever they play at home they defend well, conceding just three times in their last eight European home matches. Though they'll be vulnerable to a Chelsea counter-attack, seven clean sheets in the competition tells you they can defend.

The draw is the outsider of three in this one, and, while that's understandable, I'm happy to wager the most unlikely result is the one that comes in.

Finally, Newcastle will try to overcome a 3-1 deficit against tournament second-favourites Benfica at St James's Park.

It's a task that's likely to be beyond them, but with Premier League safety looking likely following their last-gasp win over Fulham I fancy them to give it a good go.

Papiss Cisse got the vital winner at the weekend and with four goals in his last six the Magpies talisman will be brimming with confidence.

And at 11/5 he appeals to get on the scoresheet once again for Alan Pardew's side.


Price boost for Spurs to win 3-1 at 22/1 with Sky Bet


Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

T

his is brilliant! All these years of moral ambiguity, grey areas of offence and context..now we have a simple, easy to follow guide to right and wrong. What did you do today? I kicked the face off a panda . Oh well, you didn't rape, kill anyone or abuse a minor, knock yourself champ.

megabrow (cufc)
Redknapp leaps to Mackay defence

I

wonder if he'd feel the same way if he wasn't a white, non-jewish heterosexual male. Because Mackay has basically insulted everyone else!

Jay_D
Redknapp leaps to Mackay defence

C

heers Harry. I was wondering if he'd murdered anyone

Ezy_Rider
Redknapp leaps to Mackay defence

Footer 365

Transfer report: Manchester United close on Real Madrid and Argentina winger Angel di Maria

Manchester United are set to sign Real Madrid winger Angel di Maria, according to Sky Sports' Spanish football expert Guillem Balague.

Sky Bet League 2: Morecambe top after beating Cambridge as Burton are held at Newport

Morecambe are top of the Sky Bet League Two table after claiming a fourth straight win at Cambridge, but Burton were held at Newport.

Premier League: Late goals rescue 2-2 draw for Arsenal at Everton

Arsenal scored two late goals as they came from behind in a gripping encounter at Goodison Park to hold Everton to a 2-2 draw.

Mail Box

More Fan Mail For Football365...

'Just p*ss off with your righteous indignation will you. W*nkers.' There's a lot of anger going around for what should have been a sleepy Friday afternoon at F365 Towers...

Man United: One Game To Save Season

They have one match to convince decent players that they are worth joining - over to you, Louis. We also have mails on Malky Mackay, Mario Balotelli and Tim...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property