Date: July 29, 2014
Venue: Generali Arena – Prague, Czech Republic
Kick-off Time: 17:00 BST
The UEFA Champions League qualifications are becoming more grueling and the third qualifying round will see some good football. Czech side AC Sparta Prague will host Swedish champions, Malmo FF as both sides will look to qualify for the Europe’s prestigious tournament.
The first leg is being played at the Czech side’s home ground which will be of great advantage to them as their home form has been ominous.
Sparta’s last season’s European campaign was disappointing and they will be more determined this year to wash away those memories.
The previous qualifying round’s victory against Estonian side, FC Levadia Tallinn was something else. Spearheaded by their captain, David Lafata they scored seven past a hapless Levadia side in the first leg and the second leg was a draw (Result :1-1).
Their current form, considering the Czech Super Cup and Czech league, is really good and they are really sweeping sides aside. They have scored three or more goals in three of their last six matches and four of their previous five.
Malmo FF edged past Latvian club, FK Ventsllis, scoring a solitary goal on their visit in the second leg. The first leg was a drab encounter.
Malmo’s league form is really good, but playing in Europe is different from league. The competition is strong and the likes of Sparta can hurt Malmo’s chances of going further in the tournament.
Sparta: David Lafata
Czech side’s captain, Lafata was in the form of his life against Levadia scoring five goals in the process. His leadership skills are undeniable and he is still a vital cog in the side even with advancing age.
He has never been known for scoring bucket loads of goals, but this might be his purple patch. Malmo beware!
Malmo: Markus Rosenberg
Malmo’s own home grown talent, Rosenberg returned to the club after playing in almost all the top leagues. A veteran in European competitions, his experience will be of great importance to Malmo’s European chances.
He possesses great strength and aerial ability, also is good on the ball. Sparta’s defence needs to watch out for him
I am expecting AC Sparta Prague to cruise past Malmo FF at home, which is at 1.44 with bet365. Only take this bet because any lower than 1.40 isn’t value, and it can be expected to go down quite quickly in the lead-up to this game. Also look at over 2.5 goals to be scored in the game (2.05 at bet365).