Viktoria Plzen hosts Antwerp in the second leg of the Europa League qualification semifinals. The match will be played on Thursday, August 15th at Doosan Aréna (Plzeň)
Viktoria lost in the 1st match in Belgium, but the score was only 0-1. It would seem that the Czechs should win back such a handicap at home, playing with the not-so-strong Belgian club. But everything is not so simple. Plzen has serious problems now. 3 of the last 4 matches were lost. And the team only tied in the last championship match against Bohemians, which goes 13th in the standings. Viktoria has only 4 points after 5 rounds. It relegated from the Champions League. Having played a 0-0 draw against Olympiacos at home, the team lost with a hammering 4-0 score in Greece.
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As I noted above, Antwerp is not the strongest club in Belgium. Nevertheless, it took 6th place in the last championship. And in this one, it is on the 4th line after 3 rounds. As for the last 11 matches, Antwerp lost only 1 time in the last away game against Charleroi. And it left the field without a goal scored only in 3 of last 20 matches.
And it’s worth paying attention to the Belgians’ persistence in the attack. Based on the result of the 1st match, the Czechs need to score. And preferably more than one ball. So, it can be assumed that they will attack throughout the match. And not only forwards will take part in these attacks, but the defenders will run forward from time to time. Antwerp is one of the few teams of Belgian Premier League that does not prioritize spectacular and scoring attacking football. Vice versa. The team plays rationally, often immediately giving the initiative to the opponent. Let it waste its strength trying to attack the reliable defense of Antwerp. By the way, the team conceded 34 goals in the last championship. It was one of the best results – 3rd in the league. The team has a lot of qualified offensive players (Mbokani, Rafaelov, Rodrigues) who know how to score and are likely to break through the weakened defense of the hosts at least once.
Prediction for the match: Antwerp to score over 0.5 goals