Osmanlispor VS FC Zurich Prediction
Situation in Group L of the 2016-17 UEFA Europa League looks really dodgy and we currently have all four sides separated within a single point. This makes last round of the Europa League group phase really unpredictable when it comes to Group L in particular, where one of both closing fixtures meets debutants Osmanlispor and FC Zurich. Their encounter at the “Osmanlı Stadı” in Turkish capital Ankara will take place after a 2-1 victory for Zurich in the first leg, but direct meetings won’t be important here, since there is not a way how Osmanlispor and Zurich can share same number of points at the end of the day.
“The Ottomans” hold a thin lead ahead all other teams, having won seven points in past five rounds, topping Group L of the UEFA Europa League. Except current opposition of Osmanlispor – FC Zurich, we can also find names of Romanian Steaua Bucuresti and Spanish Villarreal, all of them having six points and their own chances to go through.
Osmanlispor vs FC Zurich – Team News and Match Preview
Last round Osmanlispor lost to Steaua in Bucuresti, where Romanian team managed to made a full comeback from 0-1 to 2-1 during second 45 minutes of the game. First half of it ended with an only goal scored from Osmanlispor’s attacking midfielder Papa Alioune Ndiaye, but two second half goals of Marko Momcilovic and late winner by Gabriel Tamas have kept an exclusively intriguing situation in the group. Otherwise Osmanlispor would been in much better position, especially if they won that game – they would already been waiting for the Round of 32 draw. However, Mustafa Akçay’s side will proceed whether game here ends with a win or draw, or under any circumstances if the other Group L game facing Villarreal vs Steaua Bucuresti ends without winner. The Turkish team would top any three-way tie involving Steaua and Villarreal, which simply places them on the pole position here.
Meanwhile, Osmanlispor takes on Zurich after two consecutive home victories on both domestic competitions in past 7 days. First one of them was the 2-1 against Gaziantepspor last Thursday, which was part of the Turkish Cup groups, while on Sunday afternoon Osmanlispor repeated the same score in its 13th Süper Lig fixture against Karabükspor. Possibility for third in a row will inevitably increase confidence of club from Ankara, whose current Süper Lig positioning (7th) is a certain subject of improvement, but Osmanlispor are also inspired to reach the knockout phase in their debut UEFA Europa League participation.
Zurich are without a victory in their last six European away fixtures (2 draws and 4 defeats), as well as they couldn’t won in any from their previous journeys to Turkey. They have lost to Galatasaray and Besiktas, but this will be their first trip outside Istanbul. Last time Zurich visited Turkey was in round three of the 2007-08 UEFA Champions League qualifiers, from where they have been eliminated with 1-3 on aggregate (1-1, 0-2).
Leaving historical arguments aside, Zurich enjoys on its European nights few months after becoming a Swiss Challenge League member. That’s the second tier of Swiss football and Zurich finds itself there in year when club celebrates 120th anniversary (exact date is 1 August) as a result of a devastating 2015-16 season, finishing last (10th) in the Swiss Super League.
Nevertheless, “Der Stadtclub” found partial consolation after winning the Swiss Cup and that’s the reason Zurich has been awarded with position in the UEFA Europa League.
Uli Forte’s men are also doing their best to return in the Super League from next season and this looks very possible, since Zurich tops the league with 10 points above second-placed Neuchâtel Xamax. Thus Swiss side can be fully concentrated towards its Turkish quest, also being undefeated since 15 September, when Zurich lost 2-1 to Villarreal at the “El Madrigal”. This is their only defeat not only in Europe, but generally in the 2016-17 season.
Osmanlispor vs FC Zurich – Betting Prediction and Possible Lineups
“Der Stadtclub” covers an approximate distance of 2100 km’s from Zurich to Ankara with only purpose for winning, otherwise they’ll be eliminated from the tournament.
Uli Forte will be keen to find right approach as well as to put an end of Osmanlispor’s home form, but Swiss coach will have to wait for condition of the two defenders Ivan Kecojević and Kay Voser. They’re both doubts and Zurich’s boss also cannot rely to long-term absentees – goalkeeper Yanick Brecher and Mike Kleiber.
Osmanlispor will have to maintain its position on the peak without injured right-back Koray Altinay, while key midfielder Musa Cagiran misses out due to a suspension. And if Altinay has been succesffuly replaced by Muhammed Bayir, Cagiran’s absence brings more questions and the most likely possible replacement here seems to be Adam Maher.
Final conclusion, Betting Odds and Prediction
Zurich may feel the pressure when they’re away from home and they must go for the full set of points. We must highlight the Swiss side has committed 111 fouls in five matches – 13 more than any other team in this season’s Europa League group phase. Can they finally earn something on Turkish turf and handle with the pressure in so crucial encounter?
On other hand Osmanlispor looks rock-solid at home and “Ottomans” remain unbeaten at their own stadium after five European fixtures this season. Osmanlispor have won first four of them, before a 2-2 draw against Villarreal on 20th October. It was their last home match in the Europa League and it has been by four consecutive victories, all of them being marked with a clean sheet.
Although a draw will work fine for Osmanlispor, we believe Mustafa Akçay aims to the first position and Turkish team will do its best to win at home. Zurich are not that impressive away and we simply cannot compare their second league games with those in the Europa League. A good reason why we’d recommend betting on the home side – Osmanlispor to win over Zurich on Thursday night, 8 December 2016.
Venue: “Osmanlı Stadı”, Ankara.
Referee: Matej Jug from Slovenia.
Possible starting lineups of Osmanlispor and FC Zurich
Osmanlispor FK: Zydrunas Karcemarskas – Tiago Pinto, Václav Procházka, Numan Cürüksu, Muhammed Bayir – Mehmet Güven, Adam Maher – Dzon Delarge, Badou Ndiaye, Adrien Regattin – Pierre Webó. (4-2-3-1)
FC Zürich: Andris Vanins – Umaru Bangura, Alain Nef, Ivan Kecojevic – Marco Schönbächler, Burim Kukeli, Sangoné Sarr, Roberto Rodriguez – Oliver Buff, Adrian Winter – Armando Sadiku. (3-4-2-1)