NK Osijek host PSV Eindhoven in the second leg of the UEFA Europa League third qualifying round, with the Croatian side leading 1-0 from the first leg.
PSV Eindhoven dominated possession in the first leg and had the most shots on goal, but those statistics counted for nothing when the full-time whistle went and NK Osijek had picked up an unlikely victory. The game was goalless at the break and many expected PSV to take control of the tie in the second half. It didn’t work out that way and Borna Barisic netted the only goal of the game from the penalty spot just before the hour mark. It wasn’t just a goal which gave Osijek an unlikely victory, but it was an away goal and a clean sheet to boot.
NK Osijek Form
After two friendly victories, Osijek kicked off their Europa League campaign at the end of June with a 2-0 away win at UE Santa Coloma. They followed that with a 4-0 second leg victory to take the tie 6-0 on aggregate. In the second qualifying round, they drew Swiss side Luzern and comfortably won the first leg 2-0 at home.
Their domestic league campaign started in between the two legs against Luzern, with a 1-1 draw at home to Rudes, and they went on to lose 2-1 in Switzerland. Despite that defeat, they advanced to this stage by a single goal on aggregate. They have had another two 1-1 draws in the league since then, with the brilliant victory at PSV sandwiched in between.
PSV Eindhoven Form
PSV started off their pre-season in fine form, with two wins from their opening two friendlies. However, since then, they have drawn with Monaco and lost to Grasshoppers in warm up matches. Despite that dip in form, they were still expected to win comfortably last week. Losing to Osijek will have dented confidence in the squad, but it may also have fired the players up to show they are the better team. With just over a week left until the Dutch league season begins, this is PSV’s last chance to build momentum ahead of what they hope will be a challenge for the domestic title.
Betting Odds and Predictions
Oddly enough, PSV are the betting favourites to win this match despite their defeat as hosts last week. Ladbrokes have the away side priced at 7/10 for the victory. Osijek are 17/4, and the draw is 5/2. We understand the reasoning behind making PSV the favourites, but Osijek at odds longer than 4/1 is a bit of a surprise. If the Croatian team can defend well and get another slice of luck, the bookmakers may well lose a lot of money to punters who like to back an outsider.
In saying that, we do think PSV will be too strong this week. They may have taken the game a little lightly last week and had an off night in front of goal. It would be extremely surprising if this ended with the same winners as last time. Although Osijek got the away goal, it will be negated if PSV score and we cannot see them failing to find the back of the net again.
In fact, PSV know they need to score at least two to make it through without the need for penalties and they are priced at 5/6 to score Over 1.5 Goals. With PSV knowing they need to score more than once, and Osijek knowing they still have a lot of work to do, it’s likely there will be at least three goals here. So, the 19/20 available for Over 2.5 Goals could give punters a nice profit.
Top Betting Tip
Having looked at all the statistics available for this match, our top betting tip is PSV to score Over 1.5 Goals. This is priced at 5/6 with Ladbrokes and looks a banker to us.