AEK Larnaca vs Zurich
Competition: UEFA Europa League
Date: 20 September 2018
Kick-off: 21:00 CET
AEK Larnaca started their Europa League adventure late July, against Dundalk. Drew 0-0 away, triumphed 4-0 at home, and then destroyed Sturm Graz, beating them twice, by a total score of 7-0(!). Slovakian side Trenčín couldn’t stop their… march towards the group stage. Draw in the first leg, 1-1, and then 3-0 triumph for AEK at home. Last weekend they played their first game in Cyprus’ championship, as they were… spared earlier, while playing in the Europa League qualifiers and play-offs. They drew 1-1 at Nea Salamis, not the way they wanted to start their season domestically.
Zurich are back to the Europa League group stage after two years. Back in 2016, one win, three draws and two defeats, so six points, were not enough to give them a top-2 spot. They are on eight points from six matches in Switzerland’s championship, not particularly good. At least they beat both lowly opponents they faced in the Swiss Cup, avoiding falling victims to a mega-surprise. Ludovic Magnin took charge as their coach back in February. Young center-forward Raphael Dwamena was sold to Levante for over 6m euros, Fenerbahce paid almost 3m euros for another young striker, Michael Frey, but as expected, Zurich “invested” only a small part of that money in signing reinforcements, namely 24-year-old center-forward Assan Ceesay, from Lugano, for 1.8m.
Previous five matches:
Nea Salamis vs AEK Larnaca 1-1
AEK Larnaca vs Trencin 3-0
Trencin vs AEK Larnaca 1-1
AEK Larnaca vs Sturm Graz 5-0
Sturm Graz vs AEK Larnaca 0-2
Breitenrain vs Zurich 2-4
Lugano vs Zurich 1-0
Zurich vs Basel 1-1
Concordia Basel vs Zurich 0-6
Zurich vs St. Gallen 0-0
AEK’s next game is on Monday, again at home, versus Omonia Nicosia (Cyprus championship). On Sunday, Zurich will be hosting Luzern (Switzerland championship).
AEK Larnaca vs Zurich: Head to head Stats
No history between these two.
AEK Larnaca vs Zurich: Prediction
AEK Larnaca were… “wow” at home in the qualifiers and the play-offs. They won all three games, scoring four, five, and three goals, over Dundalk, Sturm Graz, and Trencin respectively. They looked so good, that I can’t help but back them to beat Zurich as well, especially seeing the Swiss side fail in their “serious” away matches, not against small teams from lower categories in the Swiss Cup.
AEK Larnaca vs Zurich: Betting Tips
The hosts’ win is at 1.95, good. “Over 2.5 goals” pays exactly the same. These two combined, promise an awesome 3.10.