Zurich vs AEK Larnaca
Competition: UEFA Europa League
Date: 29 November 2018
Kick-off: 18:55 CET
Zurich lost at Bayer Leverkusen three weeks ago, 1-0, but the draw between Ludogorets and AEK Larnaca in Bulgaria meant that they, as well as Leverkusen, both qualified for the last-32 of the competition, mathematically. They are on nine points (they had a perfect record before losing to Bayer), and both AEK Larnaca and Ludogorets are on just two points. What’s alarming for them is how they’ve done since then; home defeat to Sion, draw at Xamax, one point from two matches in their championship. They are fourth, on 21 points from 15 matches, eager to use this EL match as a… stepping stone to return to winning ways, ahead of their big local derby against Grasshopper the coming weekend.
After losing their first two games to Zurich and Bayer Leverkusen, AEK Larnaca had back-to-back matches against Ludogorets to try stay alive in the fight for a top-2 spot. Two draws were… decent, but not enough in this group. Left seven points behind both Zurich and Leverkusen, the best they can finish is third. At least they won their last two games in their championship, keeping a clean sheet in both matches. They are fourth, on 19 points, but have two matches in hand, which can help them improve their position in the table significantly. Back in August, when they were playing in the Europa League qualifiers and playoffs, they were… spared from playing in their league as well, and it’s those games they have in hand now.
Previous five matches:
Neuchâtel Xamax vs Zurich 3-3
Zurich vs Sion 1-2
Bayer Leverkusen vs Zurich 1-0
Luzern vs Zurich 2-5
Red Star Zürich vs Zurich 2-3
AEK Larnaca vs APOEL 1-0
Alki Oroklini vs AEK Larnaca 0-3
Ludogorets vs AEK Larnaca 0-0
AEK Larnaca vs AEL Limassol 0-1
Anorthosis vs AEK Larnaca 1-2
Zurich’s next game is on Sunday, again at home, versus Grasshopper (Switzerland championship). AEK will be visiting Enosis on Monday (Cyprus championship).
Zurich vs AEK Larnaca: Head to head Stats
Zurich have never hosted AEK Larnaca before.
Zurich vs AEK Larnaca: Prediction
I expect the hosts to win, same way they did back in September, in Cyprus.
Zurich vs AEK Larnaca: Betting Tips
Zurich’s win pays 1.83, which is actually more than what I expected. “Under 2.5 goals”, at 1.90, is my second tip, not expecting Zurich to… die trying to score more than the absolutely necessary to win the game.