Everton - AEK

Everton started new Premier League campaign with three defeats from opening four games and although Moyes and other officials claim opposite, Joleon Lescot’s departure is a big hit for club from Goodison. Defence line is so far the weakest link on the pitch. Another hit came from medical report as another key defender and skipper, Phil Neville, is likely to be out for three months with knee ligament damage. Silvain Distin and Joseph Yobo simply need some time to gel up, while new signing from Atletico Madrid John Heitinga is ineligible for Europa League. But, that’s not the end, another defender, Tony Hibbert, is suspended. So, serious problem have become a real headache. Good news are Everton is still a big favorite tonight and between resting key players and winning for raising self confidence, David Moyes will very probably choose the second option (as in previous occasions). £10mill. weight signing from Locomotiv Moscow, Diniyar Bilyaletdinov, will finally make his full debut (so far just three minutes on the pitch). Other players if fully fit and only dilemma is will Moyes rest some of his keys for Blackburn at Sunday. 

Beside they finished fourth in the previous campaign in domain league, AEK is probably the best Greek club beside Olympiakos and Pao. They started domain campaign with both opening wins, while in European previous round eliminated decent Romanians – Vaslui (1-2 away, 3-0 at home). They’re typical represent of Greek football. Players with great technical skill, they have a high level of fighting spirit and their play is really nice to watch. But, at the same tame, shaky defences (AEK’s goalie-Sebastian Saja is in more than decent shape, though) and lack of physical strength and tactics usually bring a bad outcome when they play in European competitions. AEK have noticed just a single win in last eleven European games on the road and their record is especially bad when they play against British clubs (Everton haven’t lost at home in Europe for about four years, btw.). No big missings for tonight match and despite AEK can produce some good display and score, they’re still underdogs at Goodison Park. Their chances are in underestimating by the opponent and in Everton’s defence line.

Home side will try to return some of their self confidence and fill the Greek’s net, but at the same time their problems in defence line shouldn’t be overlooked. AEK will try to make some mess and avoid defeat at least, but true is anything except Everton’s win would be a first class surprise. However, I see goals on both sides and odds on over are more than acceptable. 2.12 at Pinnacle. Over.

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