UA-52481335-1 Europa League qualifiers 13 July: Brøndby vs VPS and Shkendija vs HJK - Football Finland

Europa League qualifiers 13 July: Brøndby vs VPS and Shkendija vs HJK

Europa League Qualifiers

Europa League qualifiers 13 July: Brøndby vs VPS and Shkendija vs HJK

Shkendija vs HJK 19:00 Stadion Mladost, Strumica
Odds 1.93 – 3.30 – 3.80 – Bet NOW at RedKings

Shkendija finishes 2nd in the FYR Macedonia First League last season. They were 13 points behind winners Vardar but also 16 points ahead of 3rd placed Rabotnicki. Shkendija comes from the city of Tetovo so this Strumica stadion is not their normal home stadion. Last season they made it all the way to the Playoff round in the UEFA Europa League qualifiers, knocking out Mlada Boleslav, Neftci Baku and Cracovia along the way. In the Playoff round, Belgium team Gent was too strong. This season they already knocked out Dacia Chisinau 7-0 on aggregate.

Their team consists of mainly FYR Macedonian players with a couple of good foreign players like Stenio Jr (BRA) and Vujcic (GER). Almost all the Macedonian players have played in the FYR Macedonia national team. They are a good, organised team who can play physical football but has also enough individual talent to win games. Definitely a difficult opponent for HJK.

HJK has a couple of injury problems as both their skillfull, playmaker type players, Atomu Tanaka and Mushtagh Yaghoubi were left home. This is a big loss for HJK offense. As a good thing, their new signings Filip Valencic will be available for this match. He can play behind the striker if they decide to start with him. Valencic has been in good form in the Veikkausliiga but this would be his first match with HJK after just a few training sessions with the team.

Prediction:

There is value on the home. HJK has not been that good on the road and now they are missing both Mosa and Atom who are a big loss. Shkendija will also have the heat to back them so a narrow win for the home team looks close.

Brøndby vs VPS 19:30 Brøndby Stadion, Brøndby
Odds 1.18 – 6.00 – 13.25 – Bet NOW at RedKings

Brøndby finished 2nd last season the Danish Superliga 22 points behind winners FC Copenhagen. So far they have had a good pre-season losing only to Rostov last weekend 1-0 in a friendly game. They got to this stage in the Europa League qualifiers directly without having to play in the 1st round. Last season they made it to the Europa League Playoff round where they eventually lost to Panathinaikos. They had though knocked out Valur, Scottish club Hibernian and Bundesliga team Hertha BSC in the previous qualifying rounds. Now they are looking to go all the way to the group stages. This match is interesting for Finnish fans as there are two Finland internationals playing for Brøndby; Paulus Arajuuri and Teemu Pukki.

VPS has been in really good form in the Veikkausliiga and they also shocked everyone by knocking out Olimpija Ljubljana in the first qualifying round. They are an organised team who likes to keep the ball. They start their offenses from the back and do slow attacks. However, against better opposition, they are capable of doing good counter attacks. That is how they beat HJK earlier in the season, despite HJK having much more shots on goal. From this match VPS has Jesper Engström as a doubt.

Prediction:

There is a big difference between the teams qualitywise. VPS though has a good defense and they have not conceded a goal for almost a month now. Bröndby should win but main bet here is under 3.0 goals.

 

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