Marseille vs Atletico Madrid: Europa League Final 2018
Olympique Marseille and Atletico Madrid advanced to the 2018 UEFA Europa League final after producing positive results in their respective semi-final matches against Red Bull Salzburg and Arsenal.
Atletico Madrid seemed much more organized and balanced in the second-leg match than their rivals from London. As a result, Diego Simeone’s men beat Arsenal 1-0 at the Wanda Metropolitano, making the aggregate score 2-1 in Los Colchoneros’s favour. The single goal was scored by Spanish striker Diego Costa right before the end of the first half. It is worth to remember, however, that not everything was going smoothly for Atletico in the clash with Arsene Wenger’s side. In the first-leg match, Atletico defender Sime Vrsaljko was sent off after collecting two yellow cards, which allowed the Gunners to be in the driving seat during the most part of the game. Londoners tried to make the most of their numerical advantage, and Alexandre Lacazette’s shot helped them take the lead. With that, one chaotic piece of Gunners’s defending resulted in the goal scored by Antoine Griezmann and a 1-1 draw.
In the other semi-final meeting, Red Bull Salzburg were close to leave behind their opponents from France, however, the mistakenly awarded corner helped Marseille’s defender Rolando score in extra time. The Austrian side won the second-leg match 2-1 but it wasn’t enough to progress as Olympique Marseille won 3-2 on aggregate. It is worthwhile noting that the French side advanced to their first UEFA Cup final since 2004.
When is the Europa League Final?
The match will be held in Lyon at the Stade De Lyon on Wednesday, 16 May 2018. It will kick off at 7:45 pm (GMT).
UEFA Europa League Winners’ Prospects
The UEFA Europa League is not a patch on the top-flight Champions League alternative, however, the importance of winning this title is sufficiently high.
While the Champions League is the dwelling place of European football giants, the Europa League provides a real opportunity for the continental title to less wealthy and successful football clubs as well as the teams that could not qualify for the Champions League.
With the award in the form of qualification for the Champions League, the UEFA Europa League offers a promising perspective for all teams taking part in the competition. For example, Manchester United, who were the winners last year, took the opportunity to compete in the Champions League 2017/2018 and progressed to the Round of 8 (where they were beaten by Sevilla).
While Atletico Madrid have already resolved all issues with getting to the Champions League next season, this question remains open for Rudi Garcia’s men. Olympique Marseille are now occupying the fourth place in the French League 1 table which doesn’t guarantee the participation in the most prestigious European tournament. Les Olympiens are only three points adrift of the second position, however, as many as three teams compete for two tickets for the Champions League. The victory of the Europa League UEFA Cup can allow Marseille to kill two birds with one stone — to win the silverware and book the ticket to the top-class league.
Europa League Predictions and Betting Odds
Atletico Madrid are the bookmakers’ favourites to win the League Europa title. Online betting websites offer 8/11 betting odds for the Mattress Makers to win after regulation time. This is not surprising as the Reds-and-Whites have achieved extraordinary advances in their European campaigns during last several years. Although Diego Simeone’s men lost both League Champions finals: in 2014 and 2016, they definitely represent a significant threat for any opponent. It is also worth to remember that Atletico Madrid know how to win the Europa League finals. Los Colchoneros won the UEFA Cup in 2009 and 2011. Marseille, in their turn, are offered with 19/5 betting odds to be the winner of the UEFA Cup final after regulation time.
Taking into account that Diego Simeone mostly prefers pragmatic football, it is not reasonable to expect a lot of goals scored. The game promises an intense struggle and few dangerous moments, especially near Jan Oblack’s goal. So if you’re searching the right selection for your punt, we think, it makes sense to find value in the Total Goals betting markets.
So, we already know both finalists that will strive to take the UEFA League Europa trophy this year. Atletico Madrid and Olympique Marseille turned out to be two best teams in the tournament.
Although domestic championships will culminate on the weekend prior to the UEFA final date, both coaches are likely to provide some rest period for their key players. It gives reason to expect a thrilling and exciting football match with the best players in squads. Now, we have some time to research stats, look at betting odds, and make the right betting decision!