Astana vs Midtjylland
Competition: UEFA Champions League
Date: 24 July 2018
Kick-off: 16:00 CET
Astana made things look easy against Sutjeska in the first qualifying round, beating the Montenegro side 1-0 at home and 2-0 away. They were 1-0 up by halftime in the return leg, meaning that they had pretty much secured qualification, as, at that point, Sutjeska needed three goals, without conceding again. Astana won the championship in Kazakhstan last season, by a single point, leaving Kairat a super close second. The season in Kazakhstan is in full swing, and Astana are leading again, on 50 points from 20 matches. Looking at their roster, I’m left with the impression that this season’s Astana is a stronger team compared to last season. They kept the players they had on loan and wanted to keep, signed new ones, and the players who left were rather… expendable.
Midtjylland won the championship in Denmark last season, so they didn’t have to play in the first qualifying round of the Champions League. They have already played two official games, in their championship, but all they managed was a draw, a… continuation of their poor performances and results in their last three friendly matches before the start of Denmark’s championship. An almost… ridiculous number of players moved to and left the club. My guess is they wanted to preserve the backbone of the team, after their successful previous season, but sometimes you just can’t reject an offer for a player, no matter how important he is to you. All things considered, I feel Midtjylland today, have a slightly better roster than last season, but the start of their championship campaign says otherwise (at least for now).
Previous five matches:
Sutjeska vs FC Astana 0-2
FC Astana vs Shakhter Karagandy 2-0
FC Astana vs Sutjeska 1-0
Tobol vs FC Astana 0-0
FC Astana vs Ordabasy 5-3
Aalborg vs Midtjylland 2-1
Midtjylland vs Aarhus 0-0
AZ vs Midtjylland 1-1
Midtjylland vs SønderjyskE 1-2
Midtjylland vs Fredericia 2-2
Astana’s next game is on Saturday, again at home, versus Atyrau (Kazakhstan championship). Same day, Midtjylland will be hosting Esbjerg (Denmark championship).
Astana vs Midtjylland: Head to head Stats
This is the first game ever between these two.
Astana vs Midtjylland: Prediction
I’m backing the hosts to win the game, feeling they have a better roster, are in better condition, and, obviously have the home advantage.
Astana vs Midtjylland: Betting Tips
At 2.15, I feel Astana’s win pays well enough to avoid risking with special bets.