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Hajduk Split v Everton Betting: Koeman's men unlikely to be troubled defensively

07:45 IST 23/08/2017
Davy Klaassen Savvas Gentsoglou Everton Hajduk Split Europa League
With a two-goal lead to defend, Al Hain-Cole expects the watertight Toffees to ensure a game of few chances against Joan Carillo's team

Having built up a healthy 2-0 aggregate league at Goodison Park, Everton will be looking to complete the job when they travel to the Stadion Poljud to take on Hajduk Split in Thursday's Europa League qualifier second leg.

Goals from Michael Keane and Idrissa Gueye saw Ronald Koeman's men take control of the tie in the first leg, and they are available at 5/4 (2.25) with SportPesa to secure their place in the group stages by coming out on top yet again.

However, the Whites have won eight and lost just one of their last 11 home games in this competition, and are on offer at 21/10 (3.10) to keep their own chances of qualification alive with a sixth consecutive victory in front of their own fans.

None of the guests' previous 10 European matches have resulted in a draw, but you can get odds of 47/20 (3.35) on them settling for a stalemate in this one.

Although Koeman bemoaned his side's failure to increase their lead in the first leg, he has every right to remain confident of sealing progression despite their opponents' strong home record.

Anyone doubting the Toffees' ability to protect their two-goal lead should review their performance in Monday's 1-1 draw at Manchester City, when a solid defensive display saw them keep one of Europe's most star-studded forward lines at bay until the final 10 minutes.

In fact, Raheem Sterling's 82nd-minute volley was the first goal the Merseyside club have conceded in five competitive matches this season, bringing an end to their run of four consecutive clean sheets.

With an aggregate lead to defend, they are more than capable of returning to that watertight form when they take on a more modest Croatian outfit on Thursday.

Having scored just five goals in their five Europa League games so far this campaign, it would certainly take an uncharacteristically clinical display for Joan Carrillo's team to overturn the deficit in front of their own fans.

With Everton happy to sit back, odds of 20/23 (1.87) are not to be missed on no more than one side finding the net for their fifth game in six this season, as well as Hajduk's fifth in six in all competitions.

'No' on both teams to score for a 2pt stake at 20/23 (1.87) with SportPesa