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The bookies have Andre Villas-Boas' team and Michael Laudrup's men as favourites to win in UEFA's second-tier club competition this week, while even lowly Wigan are fancied

All three British representatives are heavy favourites to win their UEFA Europa League matches on matchday two on Thursday night.

Tottenham, the $9 favourites at bet365 to win this competition for the first time since 1984, seemingly face the toughest task away to Russian side Anzhi Makhachkala in Group K while in Group A Swansea are home to Swiss side St Gallen and Wigan host Slovenian side Maribor in Group D.

Spurs, appearing in this competition for the sixth time in eight seasons but still having yet to go beyond the quarter-finals in that period, have made a promising start in their second season under Andre Villas-Boas and sit third in the EPL after six rounds.

And they began this season's Europa League campaign with an easy 3-0 win at home against Norwegian side Tromso.

Anzhi, the big-spending Russian club that won at home against Liverpool in last season's competition, appear to come have back to earth this season following major cost cutting which saw their star man Samuel Eto'o go to Chelsea while former Socceroos boss Guus Hiddink is no longer in charge.

After finishing third in the Russian league last season, Anzhi sit a disappointing 16th this season and on match dayone could only draw 0-0 away to Moldovan minnows Sherriff Tiraspol.

So not surprisingly a Spurs side that have only conceded two goals in ten matches both domestically and in Europe this season are the $1.44 favourites at bet365 to win on Thursday night, with the home side priced at $6.50 and the draw at $4.50.

Spurs are actually the same price - $7 at bet365 - to win 2-0 in correct score betting as they are to win 1-0, so we would rather concentrate on first goal-scorer betting, where Jermaine Defoe looks a stand-out as the $4.75 favourite.

Defoe rarely starts in the EPL these days and seems to being saved for the European ties - where he scored the opening two goals in the last start win over Tromso to move to fifth on the club's all-time scoring list and second as far as European goals are concerned.

Meanwhile, in the other Group K game, Tromso are the $2.40 favourites at home against Sherriff at $2.90 at bet365, with the draw paying $3.30.


Back Spurs, Swansea, Wigan, Rubin Kazan and Valencia all to win.


Go for Jermaine Defoe to score the first goal in the Anzhi-Spurs match at odds of $4.75 at bet365

Swansea scored a stunning 3-0 win away over Spanish side Valencia on matchday one and as result last season's League Cup winners have moved into the $21 equal-fourth favourites at bet365 to win this season's competition.

And the Welsh club should maintain their great start in Group D at $1.40 at bet365 on Thursday night at home to St Gallen at $8, while in the other game, Valencia will surely bounce back at $2.50 away to Russian side Kuban Krasnador at $2.80.

In Group D last season's shock FA Cup winners Wigan - now playing in England's second tier Championship competition - began their first European campaign with a credable draw away to Belgian side Zulte Waregem.

But they should win their first home game on Thursday night at $1.55 at bet365 against what appears the weakest team in the group in Slovenian minnows Maribor at $6.50 while in the other game group favourites Rubin Kazan of Russia look specials at $1.40 at home to Zulte, who are paying $7.50.

*Note prices subject to change

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