Our prediction for this Europa League match:
Bayer Leverkusen will be looking to build on a hard-fought 1-0 win over Zurich when they take on Ludogorets at BayArena on Thursday evening. The Germans have already secured their place in the last 32, but they surely want to give fans some cheer as they made a very slow start to the new Bundesliga campaign. It is well known that Bayer produce much better performances at home than on the travels and that is yet another reason why we are tempted to put our money on the Bundesliga side. Ludogorets, on the other hand, are leading the chase for the Bulgarian First League title, but they have yet to record a win in the 2018/2019 Europa League group stages. Bayer Leverkusen did well to beat Ludogorets in Razgrad earlier in the process and they are likely to beat the Bulgarians in front of home fans as well.
Highlighted Player (Julian Brandt):
Julian Brandt is one of the most promising wingers in Germany. He started playing football in his hometown, Bremen, at SC Borgfeld, moving to FC Oberneuland, after which he joined VLF Wolfsburg’s youth academy. With 27 goals in his 48 games during two seasons with the Wolves, Brandt recommended himself to Bayer 04 Leverkusen, signing a five-and-a-half-year contract in January 2014.
The 22-year-old winger prefers to play on the left flank, but he can also provide help on the right side, as well as an attacking midfielder. During the season 2015/2016, Julian Brandt netted goals in six consecutive games, becoming the youngest player since Gerd Muller to achieve this.
The good performances in the season made Joackim Low call the youngster in Germany’s preliminary 27-man squad for the Euro 2016 and he made his first appearance for the senior squad in May 2016, against Slovakia. He was a part of the Germany squad at the Summer Olympics, where Brandt and his teammates won the silver medal. In the summer of 2018, Julian Brandt made the World Cup team.
Highlighted Team (Ludogorets):
Bulgarian football club PFC Ludogorets Razgrad, commonly referred to as Eagles, compete at the Ludogorets Arena with the capacity of 8,000. PFC Ludogorets Razgrad are owned by Kiril Domuschiev, who made it his personal goal to propel the club to domestic and international success and to hold up the Bulgarian flag high with nation’s biggest clubs Levski and CSKA going through turbulent times.
Having seen their stock rise astronomically since 2010, PFK Ludogorets Razgrad have become the first Bulgarian club to be features in the UEFA Champions League group stage twice. Previously, their maiden participation happened in 2014-15 season when the Bulgarian club made headlines due to notable results against FC Basel and Liverpool.
Their success on domestic scene has been equally impressive as PFC Ludogorets Razgrad remain the second team in the world to win a treble after being promoted from the second to the first league. Main force of the Bulgarian club are the Brazilian players, currently eight of them in the squad many of whom hold the Bulgarian citizenship.