The Europa League is back after almost five months in hibernation, as Shakhtar Donetsk welcome Wolfsburg to the Metalist Oblast Sports Complex on Wednesday. The visitors have a narrow lead to defend, with both teams aiming to make it into the last eight of the competition.
Where and when: Metalist Stadium – 5 August, kick-off 17:55
Where you can see Shakhtar Donetsk vs. Wolfsburg: BT Sport
Last time: Junior Moraes and Marcos Antonio scored either side of John Brooks’s goal as Shakhtar won 2-1 at the Volkswagen Arena back in March.
Shakhtar Donetsk v Wolfsburg Donetsk Predictions and Preview
Wolfsburg have got it all to do as they bid to overturn their deficit from the first leg of this Europa League last-16 tie. Shakhtar Donetsk are in pole position to secure their place in the next round, while their narrow lead is boosted by the fact they also managed to score two precious away goals.
Wolfsburg are already guaranteed a place in the second qualifying round for next season’s Europa League after finishing seventh in Germany’s Bundesliga. This competition gives Die Wolfe the opportunity to dine at Europe’s top table next term, and there aren’t too many teams left in it to be scared of.
One of them is their opponents here though, with Shakhtar having the better of it last time and winning the Ukrainian championship by a massive 23 points. Luis Castro’s side are unbeaten in their last nine games since the coronavirus-enforced break, winning seven, while they’ve also won two friendlies in preparation for this tie. With qualification for next season’s Champions League already in the bag, there’s no pressure on the hosts.
|Our Eurotips||Odds||Free bets||Bookie|
Shakhtar to win and BTTS
Shakhtar to win 2-1
Shakhtar to win and over 2.5 goals
Wolfsburg, meanwhile, opted to warm up for this game with one friendly against RB Leipzig, having only won three of their nine matches since their return to action in mid-May. Head coach Oliver Glasner decided to give his players a good break after the culmination of the Bundesliga season, with more than a month between their final-day 4-0 defeat to champions Bayern Munich and that friendly against Leipzig.
Whether that proves to be a wise decision remains to be seen, with the visiting Wolves the 2/1 underdogs to pick up the win. A 1-0 victory wouldn’t be enough to take them through to the last eight, while a 2-1 success would take the tie to extra-time. With that in mind, Wolfsburg are 17/1 to go through courtesy of a 2-0 victory inside 90 minutes.
One to watch for Shakhtar Donetsk: Brazilian-born Ukrainian international Junior Moraes has scored 23 goals so far this season in all competitions, including the opener in the first leg between these two teams. He is one of the favourites to break the deadlock here.
One to watch for Wolfsburg: Wout Weghorst isn’t far behind on 20 goals, with the Dutch forward notching five in his last five Bundesliga fixtures of the season. He will be a threat to Shakhtar on Wednesday and is worth a look in the anytime scorer market.
Long shot: If Shakhtar score early, Wolfsburg will be left chasing the game. The home team have the players to cause their visitors plenty of problems on the break, and if Die Wolfe leave themselves open this game could really get away from them. With that in mind, a 4-1 win for Shakhtar is priced at 45/1.