Our prediction for this Europa League match:
Following a 1-1 draw with Coleraine in Novi Sad, Spartak did well to beat the Northern Ireland side on the road and make it to the Europa League second qualifying round. The Pigeons, though, face an uphill task in Thursday’s football match against Sparta Prague and we predict that they are going to adopt a defence-minded approach in the first leg. Spartak Subotica aim to keep a clean sheet in the first leg, but preventing Sparta Prague attackers from scoring is easier said than done. The Czechs are considered favourites to win the double-header, but seeing that they have been struggling in pre-season, we are not tempted to put our money on the visitors. Sparta Prague failed to win previous five games in the Europa League, but they are definitely capable of beating Spartak Subotica, whose main problem should prove to be the lack of experience.
Highlighted Player (Guélor Kanga):
Over the years Guelor Kanga has established himself as one of the best players in the Serbian Super League. The Gabon international has been playing the key role in Crvena Zvezda ever since he joined the club in the summer of 2016 and he helped the Serbian side book their place in the 2017/2018 Europa League group stages.
Kanga scored a wonder goal in the Europa League play-offs, return leg, against Krasnodar and, as a result, he has become the fans’ favourite. The pacey midfielder started his senior career at Mangasport and he played for the likes of Missile, Mounana and Rostov as well before joining Crvena Zvezda. Kanga is well known for his brilliant passes and his technique is marvelous as well.
The Crvena Zvezda midfielder represented Gabon at the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations and he played for his homeland at the 2017 tournament as well. His main position is attacking midfield, but he is used as a winger as well.
Highlighted Team (Sparta Prague):
Established in 1893, Sparta Prague is one of Europe’s oldest clubs and the most successful side in Czech Republic, having won no fewer than 36 league titles and 27 Czech Cup trophies. The club play their games at the Generali Arena in Prague and hold a long-lasting rivalry with Slavia Prague.
Sparta Prague enjoyed their Golden Years in the 1960’s, when average attendance was nearly 40,000 and players like Jiri Tichy, Andrej Kvasnak and Vaclav Masek entertained the crowds week in week out. Rudi largely impressed in the maiden Champions League campaign during the 1991/92 season as they finished second in the semi-final group, meaning they were among top 4 European sides at the moment.
Nevertheless, Sparta Prague have enjoyed little to no success on the European stage since, reaching the Champions League knockout stages on just one occasion, with their latest major coup the return of prodigal son Tomas Rosicky from Arsenal.