Europa League last 16 Preview – First legs

Arsenal look to maintain their hopes of landing the Europa League as they visit AC Milan on Thursday.

Arsene Wenger’s side face Milan in the San Siro in the first-leg of their last 16 clash, and they will be hoping to put their poor run of form behind them.

“The players are a bit affected, these players want to win, in life you forget quickly how good you are,” said Wenger.

“[We need] to set reachable targets, focus on what you can do better and not be scared too much about the consequences of a bad result.

“In my opinion it will be a tight tie, because Milan is doing well at the moment.”

Elsewhere on Thursday – favourites Atletico Madrid host Lokomotiv Moscow, and the highly fancied Borussia Dortmund entertain Red Bull Salzburg.

French giants Lyon and Marseille are in action, with Bruno Genesio’s side travelling to Russia to take on CSKA Moscow, whilst Athletic Bilbao make the trip to the Stade Velodrome.

RB Leipzig welcome Russian giants Zenit St Petersburg to the Red Bull Arena and Dynamo Kiev take on Lazio at the Stadio Olimpico.

Finally, Sporting Lisbon take on Czech outfit Viktoria Plzen.

See below for a run-down on the games, including predictions from our own Football Insider Graeme Bailey together with everything you need to know from the bookies – with BoyleSports’s Leon Blanche.

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First leg
AC Milan 18:00 Arsenal

San Siro

TEAM NEWS: Arsenal are without Hector Bellerin, Alexandre Lacazette, Nacho Monreal and Santi Cazorla as Arsene Wenger looks set to field his first Xi in this competition for the first team, although Colombian goalkeeper David Ospina is expected to start.
KEY FACT: Milan have kept six consecutive clean sheets
MATCH ODDS: AC 11/10 Draw 23/10 Arsenal 5/2
GRAEME SAYS: Should be a very good game, I think Arsenal can squeeze a win, but AC will score…1-2
BOYLESPORTS PICK: AC to win @11/10 
FOOTBALLIndex – One to follow: Gianluigi Donnarumma is the best young keeper in the world, get on him

Atletico Madrid 18:00 Lokomotiv Moscow
Wanda Metropolitano

BOYLESPORTS MATCH ODDS: Atletico 2/9 Draw 9/2 Lokomotiv 14/1
GRAEME SAYS: Tournament favourites for a reason, home win…2-0

Borussia Dortmund 18:00 FC Red Bull Salzburg

BOYLESPORTS MATCH ODDS: Borussia 8/15 Draw 16/5 Salzburg 5/1 
GRAEME SAYS: Dortmund should come out on top, but another close game…2-0

CSKA Moscow 18:00 Lyon
VEB Arena

BOYLESPORTS MATCH ODDS: CSKA 7/4 Draw 21/10 Lyon 13/8 
GRAEME SAYS: Think this has a draw written all over it…1-1

Lazio 20:05 Dynamo Kiev
Stadio Olimpico

BOYLESPORTS MATCH ODDS: Lazio 4/9 Draw 7/2 Kiev 6/1
GRAEME SAYS: Lazio will take the win here, be too strong for Dynamo…3-0

Marseille 20:05 Athletic Bilbao
Stade Velodrome

BOYLESPORTS MATCH ODDS: Marseille 4/5 Draw 5/2 Bilbao 7/2
GRAEME SAYS: A quality looking game, and I think Bilbao will get something here…1-1

RB Leipzig 20:05 Zenit St Petersburg
Red Bull Arena

BOYLESPORTS MATCH ODDS: Leipzig 4/6 Draw 14/5 Zenit 4/1
GRAEME SAYS: Zenit are a quality team and I think will win here…1-2

Sporting Lisbon 20:05 Viktoria Plzen
Estadio Jose Alvalade

BOYLESPORTS MATCH ODDS: Sporting 4/9 Draw 3/1 Plzen 15/2 
GRAEME SAYS: Sporting to seal a first round win, will have too much for Plzen…2-0

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