Bulgaria VS Luxembourg Prediction
Bulgaria and Luxembourg are two of the underdogs in Group B of European Qualifiers for the 2018 FIFA World Cup but they’ll definitely aim to kick-off with positive result, when they have opportunity to do so. And if for Bulgaria good results can mean only mandatory win, then Luxembourg will be pleased on a low margin defeat, but of course, we’re sure that everyone in small Western European country dreams for first result different from defeat when facing Bulgaria. Indeed, Bulgaria holds a hundred percent success ratio against Luxembourg which consist 12 wins out of 12 meetings – all of them in different European or World Cup qualifiers in period 1969-2007.
World Cup 2018 Qualifiers: Bulgaria vs Luxembourg – Betting Preview
Last encounter of Bulgaria and Luxembourg was 9 years ago, September 2007, when Bulgarians won with 3:0 at same venue which will stage tonight’s fixture, but to be honest, Bulgaria is a pale shade of the glorious team from the 90’s, or even from selection with players like Dimitar Berbatov, Martin Petrov and Stiliyan Petrov. As a comparison Bulgaria have won 25 points and they couldn’t qualify for UEFA Euro 2008, losing in just one of their 12 qualifiers. Thereafter Bulgaria hardly collects more from 13-14 points and regress in club and national football is obvious.
Bulgarians are considered for favorites and that’s out of question, but anyway, that’s not the same team which was winning with ease against such opponents and latest results prove that “The Lions” are toothless. Bulgaria participated in the friendly Kirin Cup which takes places in Japan, while other top nations were on eve of their UEFA Euro 2016 campaigns, where Bulgarians have conceded eleven goals in only 2 games – 2-7 defeat against Japan, followed by 0-4 from Denmark in the third-place decider. We believe that this pretty much shows current level of football in Bulgaria and even national team coach Ivaylo Petev has stated that people shouldn’t expect something more by the team… All these arrogant statements are not something now for people in charge of the team, but mostly for the Bulgarian Football Union, whose lack of any professionalism and long-term perspectives apparently played huge role for the absolute collapse in Bulgarian football.
What can we say for guests from Luxembourg? They’re the typical football underdog who usually finishes on last position in its qualifying group and their achievements are limited by slipping of some other team. And that’s more than normal for the country, so they are playing only for honor, with hopes to avoid huge scorelines, of course in their detriment.
Few days before the opening World Cup qualifier in Bulgaria, Luxembourg have suffered 1-3 defeat by Latvia and this was fifth consecutive defeat in friendly game. However, we must underline first friendly of Luxembourg after ending the UEFA Euro 2016 qualifiers, when in November 2015 “The Red Lions” achieved prestigious win against Greece – 1:0 at home turf, after late winner scored by captain and most experienced name in their selection – Aurélien Joachim. That game was preceded by another similar outcome in September 2015, when Luxembourg scored another late winner, which has marked their first and also only success in the European Qualifiers – 1:0 vs FYR Macedonia. Thus they’ve ended above Macedonia in the final standings and we can say that was good achievement for the unpretentious squad from Luxembourg.
Bulgaria vs Luxembourg – Betting Prediction and Possible Lineups
Bulgaria and Luxembourg are surely not making illusions they can compete with France, Sweden and the Netherlands, as initial expectations are that recently mentioned favourites will form deep contention for top positions, whilst Belarus and Bulgaria will be rivals for fourth position.
That’s why we can expect everything from that game and even if Bulgarians are certain favourites of the bookmakers, we still find great value in odds for “Both teams to score”. Really, that’s a brave bet and it may even looks reckless, but we don’t see why odds should be so high, especially when Bulgarian defense has been really shaky even in brighter days. Moreover, expectations are that Ivaylo Petev may give chance to some of the youngsters and this relates name of 20-year-old centre-back of CSKA Sofia – Bozhidar Chorbadzhiyski, who is expected to form centre-back duo with Ivan Ivanov. Another rumor says that Chorbadzhiyski won’t be the only one who can make his international debut tonight, but his teammate Anton Nedyalkov (left-back) may start as well.
These players are still young and they’ll surely give their best to leave good impressions, but this doesn’t mean they’re rock-solid defenders and odds around 3.40-3.50 for Both teams to score are more than welcome by our betting analysts here. Luxembourg have scored goals against teams that are on similar level or even more organized than Bulgaria, so we don’t see why we cannot expect a goal by Luxembourg here? Or even some bigger surprise? Who knows. Our betting prediction falls on “Both teams to score – Yes”.
Last example for similar wrong step by Bulgarian team dates from less than two years when they couldn’t won against Malta at home – 1:1 draw.
Venue: “National Stadium Vasil Levski”, Sofia.
Referee: Gediminas Mažeika from Lithuania.
Possible starting lineups of Bulgaria and Luxembourg
Bulgaria: Vladislav Stoyanov – Anton Nedyalkov, Bozhidar Chorbadzhiyski, Ivan Ivanov, Strahil Popov – Svetoslav Dyakov, Georgi Milanov – Aleksandar Tonev, Marcelinho, Ivelin Popov – Dimitar Rangelov. (4-2-3-1)
Luxembourg: Anthony Moris – Laurent Jans, Chris Philipps, Maxime Chanot, Mathias Jänisch – Tom Laterza, Mario Mutsch, Lars Gerson, Daniel da Mota – Vincent Thill, Aurélien Joachim. (4-4-2)