LASK Linz vs Man UnitedUEFA Europa League, KO: 17:55 Mar 12, 2020, Raiffeisen Arena
MANCHESTER United will be looking to continue their mini-revival when they lock horns with LASK Linz on Thursday evening.
The Austrian outfit are flourishing in what is their first foray onto the continent in over two decades and their remarkable run to the last-16 has seen them get rewarded with what is the biggest game in their history to date, namely, a showdown with Manchester United.
The Black-Whites finished top of Group D ahead of European regulars Sporting Lisbon, PSV and Rosenborg and Valerien Ismael's side have since dumped Dutch title-hopefuls AZ Alkmaar out of the Europa League during the round of 32.
Closer to home, LASK are flying high at the top of the Austrian Bundesliga as they bid to claim what would be a first league crown since 1956.
However, LASK can expect their toughest test to date when they go toe-to-toe with a Manchester United side who are building late-season momentum.
Winning the Europa League was widely regarded as the Red Devils best route into next season's Champions League, however, United's 2-0 win over fierce rivals Man City on Sunday could go a long way to seeing Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side return to Europe's top table next term.
The Betting Odds
LASK Linz are an unfancied 11/4 to take a first-leg lead to Old Trafford, while an all-square affair in Austria is at a best 9/4 with SportingBet.
Manchester United have lost only one of their last 19 Europa League matches and the bookmakers fancy that sequence to be extended on Thursday evening with an away win priced at Evens with Boylesports.
The Betting Angles
The hosts have been formidable at home this season, however, given that this game will be played behind closed doors, coupled with the fact that LASK will be without two key defenders, I fancy in-form Man United to take a positive result back to Old Trafford.
Indeed, an away win takes appeal at Evens with Boylesports, however, the Austrian's have triumphed in each of their last six home matches in the Europa League and they have been scoring freely on home turf domestically.
Therefore, I'm going to opt for an alternative angle by combining Man United on the double chance in a match that sees over one goal scored at 3/4 with William Hill – a betting angle that banked profit for me in Belgium last month.
What's more, the Red Devils are unbeaten in six away matches and they have registered six shutouts in their eight Europa League assignments this term.
Given the superior talent that Solskjaer has at his disposal Man United will fancy their chances of grabbing that all-important away goal, however, I'm also attracted to the 11/10 (Bet365) on offer for United to notch two or more away strikes.
Man United's resurgence has coincided with the arrival of Bruno Fernandes who's eye-catching displays have brought some traditional swagger back to United's style of play and with the Portuguese playmaker pulling the strings against a makeshift LASK backline, the 11/10 that is available for two or more Man United goals catches the eye.
United's upturn in form can also be attributed to the defensive solidity that has seen them concede on only two occasions in their last 10 fixtures across all competitions.
However, the Red Devils rigid rearguard will face a stern examination from an LASK outfit who have made the net bulge in all of their Europa League outings in their manor this term and the hosts have banged in four or more strikes in three of their last five Austrian Bundesliga bouts at home.
With that in mind, backing both teams to get on the scoresheet appeals at odds-against of 21/20 with SportNation, however, I also like the look of the 5/6 (Bet 365) that is available for the hosts to hit the back of the net before the 75th minute – a bet that has clicked for LASK in 11 of their last 12 outings at this venue.
This UEFA Europa League match between LASK Linz and Man United will be played on Mar 12, 2020 and kick off at 17:55