The group stage for the Europa League kicks off today and a 1pm EDT match features a struggling Valencia side looking to right the ship as it hosts Swansea.
Valencia was always one of the top teams in La Liga over the last decade, but it has uncharacteristically struggled out of the gate this year. With a record of 1-3-0 in domestic play this season, including a 3-1 loss to Real Betis four days ago, Valencia will look to get on track today in a tournament it has performed well in in the past.
At 1.80, the value isn't as good as I was hoping for. I was expecting around 2.00 for the outright. I would not have touched Valencia today, but because of two key injuries to Swansea (Pablo Hernandez and Leon Britton) I see the Premier League club hurting at the end of the final whistle today. The 2-0 win would bring that up to 9.00 which is much better, but this team will need to play a lot better than how it performed against Betis in order for that to crack.
The draw outright is at 3.60 over at William Hill, while the draw with Swansea +1 (Valenica win by two) is being offered around 3.75.
The visitors are coming off a 2-2 draw against Liverpool on the weekend and though hurting injury-wise will be happy to be getting Valencia as the Spaniards are going through their current difficulties. I don't envision an upset even with a payout of 5.00.
The special that is available at the aforementioned British-based bookmaker sees a Valencia win combined with a goal from Portuguese international Helder Postiga during the game being listed at 3.50. He already has three goals on the season in four games (from only seven shots) and has been strong with the national team as well.