Fenerbahce vs Zenit St Petersburg
UEFA Europa League
Tuesday, 12 February 2019
Kick-off @ 17:55 UK/ 18:55 CET
Venue: Sukru Saracoglu Stadium (Istanbul).
Fenerbahce have a tricky fixture to negotiate as they are drawn against Russian giants Zenit for the round of 32 tie.
This has been a disastrous season for Fenerbahce and their first target in Turkish League is to move as far as possible from the relegation zone.
They have been inconsistent in Europe as well and managed to scrape through the group phase on the back of 2 wins and a draw bagged at home turf. Traditionally poor travelers and current form is a blow for Fenerbahce to survive in this double legged tie, even if they win the first leg.
Zenit St Petersburg are having a good season by all means and they are sitting at the top of their domestic league.
In Europe, they do have serious problems playing on the road and they managed to get out of the group purely on the merit of three home wins. So, just like their Turkish opponent, Zenit are also a team strong at their own backyard, which makes this first leg tie a cat and mouse affair.
Fenerbahce vs Zenit St Petersburg Head-to-head
Tuesday’s Europa League round of 32 tie will be the first ever competitive meeting between Fenerbahce and Zenit.
Still, it will be worth to note that Fenerbahce met teams from Russia on 8 previous occasions and hold a moderate record with 2 wins 4 draws and 2 losses. Yet, they are unbeaten in the four games played at home – 2 wins, 2 draws.
This will be Zenit’s second meeting with a Turkish club, the previous was way back in 2005 when they drew Besiktas 1-1 in an away fixture.
Fenerbahce vs Zenit St Petersburg Prediction
Both teams are extremely strong at their home turf, however completely opposite in away trips. Fenerbahce lost just 1 of their last 14 Europa League home games and thus they are strong favorites here, especially when Zenit haven’t won an away game in the competition since 2017. The Russians indeed lost 5 of their 7 fixtures during that period.
Still, I do opt the safe double chance option here, because of Fener’s low position in their domestic league.
The second question is can we expect goals here since Zenit are still on winter break and come with a poor away record in Europe.
My answer is yes, since Fenerbahce are not the same team we saw in the past four or five seasons. They are struggling at the bottom half of the Turkish League and struggled to keep opposition attacks at bay. Thus, BTTS is a good option considering Zenit have scored in 78% of their last 50 away games in Europa League.
Fenerbahce vs Zenit St Petersburg Betting Tips
Both teams to Score @ 1.95 (10/11)
Double Chance – Fenerbahce or Draw @ 1.42 (3/7).