Our football match prediction:
As expected, Gabala suffered a 3-1 loss to Anderlecht in the opening match of their Europa League campaign, but on the other hand, the Azeri outfit have been impressive in the national championship of late. Thanks to a 2-0 win at Zira the team extended their winning run in the Premyer Liga to four games and it has to be noted that they managed to keep a clean sheet in each of their last eight league fixtures. However, they face a difficult task in Thursday’s football match against Mainz. The Bundesliga side were on the verge of beating Saint Etienne in their opener, but they eventually shared the spoils with the Ligue 1 team in front of home fans. Mainz head into the match against Gabala following a 3-2 loss to Bayer Leverkusen and, no doubt, they will be happy with one point from the game. Seeing that Gabala are tough to beat at home, share of spoils appears on the cards.
Highlighted Player (Yoshinori Muto):
Yoshinori Muto joined FC Tokyo youth school at the age of 16 and he remained at the club until 2010. After spending three years at Keio University, the Japanese striker returned to Tokyo in 2013 and it has to be noted that he played 51 league matches for FC Tokyo, scoring 23 goals for the club. On 30 May, 2015 Muto signed a contract with Mainz and he has been playing for the Bundesliga outfit ever since. Muto made 20 appearances for Mainz in the 2015/2016 Bundesliga campaign, scoring seven league goals for the club. The pacey attacker made his Japan debut on 5 September, 2014 in a friendly against Uruguay. He came as a substitute after 58 minutes, replacing Yusuke Minagawa. He scored his first goal for the Samurai Blue four days later in a 2-2 draw with Venezuela. Yoshinori Muto was born in Tokyo on 15 July, 1992. Muto is a centre forward and his side positions are left wing and attacking midfield. His market value on 22 July, 2016 was €5.5 million.
Highlighted Team (Qabala):
Gabala are one of the youngest clubs in Azerbaijan. The Dag canavari were founded on 3 July, 1995 under the name of Goygol and 11 years later they changed from Goygol to Gabala. It has to be noted that former Arsenal star Tony Adams was in charge of the club from 2010 to 2011. The English tactician was forced to quit his job due to family problems. Gabala have yet to win the Azerbaijan Premier League title, but they made it to the Azerbaijan Cup final in 2014, losing to Neftchi Baku on penalties in the title game. Gabala booked their place in the 2016/2017 Europa League group stages by beating Slovenian outfit Maribor in the two-legged tie. The club welcome their rivals at Gabala City Stadium. The venue was opened on 1 September, 2005 and the capacity of the stadium is 2000. Gabala play their home games in red shirts and black shorts, whilst the colour of their away kits is white.