Our prediction for this Europa League match:
Linfield will be looking to extend their winning run in the Europa League to four games when they host Qarabag at their Windsor Park in the first leg of the play-offs. The Northern Ireland side are on the verge of writing history and we are positive that they are going to fight tooth and nail in Thursday’s football match against Qarabag. David Healy’s troops are brimming with confidence ahead of the first leg, therefore, we believe that they are going to grab something from the game.
The Azeri, on the other hand, suffered a shocking elimination to APOEL in the Champions League third qualifying round as they were beaten by the Cypriotes in front of home fans. Considering that Linfield footballers are in the form of their lives, we beliee that there is a big value in betting on the underdogs, who are likely to leave their hearts on the field once again.
Highlighted Player (Jakub Rzezniczak):
The 29-year-old Polish defender Jakub Rzeźniczak plays for Legia Warsaw as a centre-back. Long-serving soldier for the Polish giants has been with the club since 2004 and has amassed more than 230 league appearances, performing as club’s captain and one of the most reliable first-team members. Rzezniczak helped Legia to four Ekstraklasa titles, six Polish Cup trophies and one Polish Supercup.
Following his 20 league appearances in the title-winning season for the Militarians, Jakub Rzezniczak struggled to keep his place in the team with his future with Legia put in serious doubt over the summer of 2016. Rzezniczak was heavily criticised, not only for his poor performances for the team, but only for fi equally poor attitude and social media activities which put a serious dent in his reputation and relationship with the Polish club.
Determined to get back in favour with both the club and the fans, Rzezniczak vowed to be at his best behaviour in order to make a serious contribution in his team’s UEFA Champions League challenge.
Highlighted Team (Qarabag):
Over the years Qarabag have established themselves as one of the best teams in Azerbaijan. The club was founded in 1951 and they were playing under the name of Mehsul back then. Qarabag won their first trophy in the national championship in 1993, beating Khazar Sumgayit in the title game.
In the 2015/2016 season they won their fourth domestic trophy, with the team finishing the season 22 points clear of second-placed Zira. Qarabag participated in the 2016/2017 Champions League qualifiers, but they were more than unfortunate to suffer a loss to Viktoria Plzen in the two-legged tie. The Azerbaijan outfit were beaten by the Czechs on away goal rule and, as a result, they made it to the Europa League playoffs.
Thanks to a win over Goteborg in the double-header Qarabag made it to the knockout stages of the competition. The Horsemen play their home games at Azersun Arena and their home colours are black. Qarabag play their away games in white kits.