Our prediction for this Europa League match:
Sporting Braga play host to Zorya at their Estadio Municipal de Braga in the Europa League third qualifying round, return leg. The two teams played out a 1-1 draw in Ukraine, meaning that the Portuguese side are on the right track to make it to the play-off. Given the experience Braga have gained by participating in European competitions, it is no surprise the hosts are seen as hot favourites to emerge triumphant in Thursday’s football game. A man to watch in the home team will be midfielder Ricardo Horta, who found the net in the first leg. Zorya face an uphill task in the return leg and we do not believe that they are capable of making a miracle at Estadio Municipal de Braga. You should know that the Ukrainian side are on a four-match winless run in the Europa League ahead of the trip to Portugal.
Highlighted Player (Marko Bakic):
Marko Bakic began his senior career at Mogren, playing 33 league games for the club between 2010 and 2012. On 30 August, 2012 he signed a two-year deal with Serie A team Torino and he made his debut with the club on May, 19 in a 2-2 draw against Catania.
The Montenegro international, who was born in Budva on 1 November, 1993, then moved to Fiorentina, but he made no more than three league appearances with the Viola from 2013 to 2016. After ending his loan spells with Spezia and Belenenses, he moved to Braga in 2016, penning a five-year contract. On 15 August, 2012 Marko Bakic made his Montenegro debut against Latvia at the age of 18. His main position is central midfield, but he is capable of playing as a defensive midfielder as well.
Marko Bakic made his Braga debut against Vitoria Guimaraes, replacing Rafa Silva in the second half of the match. Os Minhotos recorded a 1-0 win over Guimaraes back then.
Highlighted Team (Zorya):
Zorya are a professional football club that compete in the Ukrainian Premier League. The club was founded in 1923 and in 1972 they won Soviet Top League. Speaking of competitions in Ukraine, Zorya made it to the cup final in the 2015/2016 season, with the team losing to Shakhtar Donetsk (0-2) in the title game.
Despite suffering the loss to the Miners in the Ukrainian Cup final, Zorya made it to the Europa League group stages. It has to be noted that the Ukrainian team played out a 1-1 draw with Fenerbahce on their debut in the group stages of the European competition. Slavutych Arena has been the home ground of the club since 2014 and you should bear in mind that they played at Avanhard Stadium from 1951 to 2014.
Before the World War II Zorya played their home games at Lenin Stadium. The club’s home colours are black and white. Anatoliy Kuksov is the club’s most capped players, making 517 appearances for Zorya in all competitions.