6th of April 2016 Author: Johnny Karp
Sparta Prague visit Villarreal on Thursday in the first leg of the Europa League quarter-finals, which will also represent the first ever meeting between the two sides. Villarreal have a good track record at home so far this season as they have not conceded any goals so far in the Europa League. Sparta Prague have their own positive record: they have not lost any of their last 12 European matches.
Villarreal have not lost a match in the Europa League since September, when Rapid Wien defeated them 2-1. After that loss they won six and drawn three matches, including the 2-0 aggregate victory over Bayer Leverkusen in the previous round (2-0 at home and 0-0 away). That result also boosted their form in the Primera Liga, where they held Barcelona to a 2-2 draw before recording a 2-1 win over Eibar. Antonio Rukavina is suspended for the match, while Mateo Musacchio and Daniele Bonera are injured.
Sparta Prague are one of the pleasant surprises of this season's Europa League as they knocked out Italian side Lazio in the previous round. The manner of the success was even more pleasing as they won 3-0 in Italy after a 1-1 draw in Prague. In fact, Sparta have won three consecutive away matches in Europe and, as already mentioned, they have not lost in 12 games. Mario Holek will miss out through injury.
Villarreal: Asenjo - Gaspar, Ruiz, Adrain, Eric - Suarez, Pina, Castlillejo, Soriano - Lopez, Soldado.
Sparta Prague: Bicik - Brabec, Mazuch, Nhamoniesu - Zahustel, Marecek, Krejci, Vacha, Dockal - Sural, Julis
My prediction: Villarreal to win 1-0.
Here are the odds for the match at Bet365:
Villarreal win - 1.50
Draw - 4.33
Sparta win - 8.00
7th of November 2018
17th of April 2019
This will be a difficult match. Villarreal plays in a variable form,they are not constant, while I was pleasantly surprised by Sparta. They ashamed Lazio and unexpectedly qualify for this round. They have nothing to lose,and they will play for all or nothing. Therefore, I expect a draw or even a win for Sparta tonight. And of course will cheer for them.
Villareal has some problems with injuryes but they are more quality team then Sparta. Sparta surprised Lazio at Olimpico but I doubt that they can do that at Madrigal. However, they can put good performance because pressure is off them, they achieved more than expected this year. I think that Vilarreal will be too much for them and win something like 2-0.
After this win ,Villareal is closer to the next stage,but there is still a lot to be played.Sparta Prague has hope ,goal in Spain is big thing for them,so they will probably be looking for 1 0 win to get through to the next stage.Yellow Submarine will remain favorite,but I would not be surprised if Sparta qualify to the next round.
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