Visitors had a strong season last campaign and finished ahead of a number of big name teams. However, the squad has broken up in the off season withTum, Herve, Bilica, Balili and Sylla all leaving. Significant new signings are non existent and missing tonight are Mehmet Yildiz, Badur and Omotoyossi and of whom would have started . Pre season form has been dire and they look a long way from the team of last season.
Anderlecht lost out on the Championship in a playoff and to a Champions League group place with a shock defeat to BATE , although given their exploits in the group stage, perhaps that was not such a terrible loss, as it appeared at the time.They are very determined to get past this stage and have performed well in build up games. They have kept their squad intact and strengthened in the break and will not want to go to Turkey without a lead. Home win.
7.5 points Anderlecht -1/2 ball 1.67 general quote.
SPARTA PRAGUE - PANATHINAIKOS
Greek teams have traditionally struggled on the road, but Panathinaikos are doing their best to put that reputation to bed. Last year they won not only here 2-1, at a similar stage, but away at both Inter Milan and Bremen, qualifying through a terribly tough group and then earning a fine draw at Villarreal in the last 16. They love it in Prague and are 100% from three visits this decade in european competition. They have added Djibril Cisse, Gilberto Silva, Sebastian Leto and Kostas Katsouranis to an already strong squad in the last year and look very capable of a repeat win. Czech football looks to have regressed and Sparta seem weaker than when the two last met, their midfield is very inexperienced and this is where I think we will see the Greeks take charge and dominate. Only South African Bryce Moon is missing for the visitors and they should win this.
7 points Panathinaikos -1/2 ball 2.40 general quote.