MARK O’Haire (@MarkOHaire) takes a look at the betting ahead of Dynamo Kiev’s duel with Fiorentina on Thursday night in the first leg of their Europa League quarter-final.
Dynamo Kiev v Fiorentina | Thursday 20.05 | BT Sport 1
Dynamo Kiev have built a successful Europa League campaign upon a fortress home record at their NSC Olimpiyskiy home and Sergi Rebrov’s side can extend their excellent run on home soil when Fiorentina visit Ukraine on Thursday night.
Following first leg losses at Guingamp and Everton in the knockout stages, Dynamo turned both ties on their heads with rampant displays in front of their passionate home support. It’s now five successes on the spin at the NSC in the Europa League and 22 games unbeaten in all competitions.
Topping their domestic table, Kiev have suffered just one reverse in 11 (away in Everton) and welcome Younes Belhanda back into the fray. Expect the Moroccan magician to slot in alongside Jeremain Lens, Artem Kravets and Andriy Yarmolenko in a fearsome attacking four for the hosts. Evgeniy Makarenko is the only injury concern.
Visitors Fiorentina saw their hopes of a top-three finish in Serie A extinguished last weekend. Their 3-0 defeat at Napoli came on the back of a 3-0 Coppa Italia semi-final loss against Juventus with Vincenzo Montella’s men running out of steam as the business end of the season approaches.
La Viola have W6-D3-L1 in Europa League action this term and avoided defeat in their 11 away days in this competition, displaying real resilience on the road. The Florence-based club overcame a first-half storm at White Hart Lane against Spurs and produced a sterling performance at Italian rivals Roma in the last 16 but it’s hard to ignore Montella’s recent comments.
Speaking after their weekend defeat, the Fiorentina boss suggested morale in the camp took a hammering after their Juventus loss and the open scars would take a while to heal. With numerous injuries this season, collective fatigue in the squad and supposed mental weakness, Thursday’s trip could see things get a little uglier for La Viola before improving.
Dynamo have W13-D3-L0 on their home patch this term, beaten every Europa League team they’ve faced in Kiev by at least two goals and look a very solid play at 7/5 quotes thanks to William Hill. But hey, for the brave amongst you I’ll also be sticking a wee fiver on 888Sport’s huge 29/10 on Fiorentina -1 in the Asian Handicap market.
Taking the Asian Handicap route will see our stake returned should Dynamo win by one goal. But should the hosts come out on top by two goals or more, we’ll bag profit at odds of almost 3/1! I’m begrudgingly aboard (I’ve a soft spot for Fiorentina).
Dynamo Kiev v Fiorentina – Dynamo Kiev to win (7/5 William Hill)
Dynamo Kiev v Fiorentina – Dynamo Kiev -1 Asian Handicap (29/10 888Sport)
Do you have a strong view on this Europa League showdown? Reckon Mark’s on the right lines?
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