Our prediction for this Europa League match:
Real Sociedad will be aiming to keep their 100% record intact in Group E when they host Sheriff Tiraspol to their Reale Arena on Thursday evening. La Real recorded a routine 2-0 win over Sheriff in Moldova a week ago, and, as a result, the bookies see them as favourites to record yet another win over Stjepan Tomas’ troops. All Barrenetxea, Gorosabel, Merquelanz, Oyarzabal, and Sadiq have been struggling with injuries of late, speaking of the home side.
The Moldovans, on the other hand, are eyeing a spot in the Conference League knockout stages, but they should not be looking for points in San Sebastian as Real Sociedad have turned Reale Arena into a real fortress. Sheriff midfielder Moussa Kyabou is banned for the match, which is yet another reason why we are going to put our money on the La Liga side.
Highlighted Player (Mikel Oyarzabal):
Intelligence is not an attribute you will find in Mikel Oyarzabal’s stats with Real Sociedad but this tricky winger is a highly knowledgeable winger who will use both brain and feet while playing. For a player born in Eibar, who made his first steps in his hometown club, it was always going to be a choice between Athletic Bilbao and Real Sociedad for Oyarzabal.
La Real saw their chance and grabbed this gem of a player at a young age, helping him develop into a proper professional throughout their youth ranks. Mikel Oyarzabal has spent the entirety of his senior career with the Basque behemoths where he’d use his ability to fill in a number of positions up top much to his own benefit.
Oyarzabal’s positioning and movement are work of a tactical genius, whereas it is his nous to find details to exploit that best define him as a player. Having come through the youth categories of the Spanish national team, Oyarzabal also has a senior cap next to his name. It was in 2016 that he also represented the Basque region, scoring on his debut to cap a 3-1 win over Tunisia.
Highlighted Team (Sheriff Tiraspol):
Sheriff Tiraspol or simply Sheriff are the most successful Moldavian club. The club was founded in 1997 four years later (2000/2001) they won their first Moldovan National Division trophy. Over the years Sheriff Tiraspol have established themselves as the dominant force in the Moldovan football and you should that they won their 15th domestic trophy in the 2016/2017 season.
Sheriff were level on points with Dacia Chisinau, but thanks to a better goal difference Roberto Bordin’s men won the national championship. The Moldovan champions wear yellow shirts and yellow shorts when playing at home, whilst the colour of their away kits is black. Sheriff Tiraspol host their opponents at Sheriff Stadium in Tiraspol and the venue can hold 12.746 people.
By beating the likes of Dinamo Tirana and Dinamo Zagreb the Moldovan club did well to make it to the Champions League play-off round in the 2010/2011 season, but Basel eventually proved to be a big catch for them.