The 48th edition of the UEFA Europa League (a former UEFA Cup) will close down Wednesday, May 29, 2019, at Olympic Stadium in Baku, Azerbaijan, as two English sides Chelsea and Arsenal will take on each other to decide who will lift the trophy. This will be the 198th head-to-head duel between these two London rivals, and Chelsea has recorded 76 wins, Arsenal has won 63 games, while 58 matchups were finished in a draw. Both teams will play for the second time in the Europa League Final. Chelsea won the title in 2013 with a 2-1 victory over Benfica, while Arsenal lost on penalties to Galatasaray in 2000.
We saw 560 goals in 204 games this Europa League season including the qualifying rounds which is 2.75 goals per contest, and 56 teams battled to win the trophy since the group stage started back in September 2018. There were 251 first-half goals and 304 second-half goals, while five goals were scored in extra time. Also, 21.4% of all goals were bagged in the final 15 minutes of the game, while 34 of 60 contests in the knock-out stage had three or more goals in the total.
Chelsea vs. Arsenal
Three-way: 1: Chelsea +135; X: +240 Draw; 2: Arsenal +225
Spread 0: Chelsea -150; Arsenal +120
Total 2.5 Goals: Over -110; Under -110
Both Teams to Score: Yes -143; No +104
To Win Outright: Chelsea -138; Arsenal +110
The Blues finished their English Premier League campaign at the 3rd spot of the table with 72 points out of 38 games and a 63:39 goal difference to earn the place in the Champions League next season. They are undefeated in the last eight outings in all competitions, recording three wins and five ties while keeping their net intact three times in the process. Chelsea knocked out Malmo FF, Dynamo Kyiv, Slavia Prague, and Eintracht Frankfurt in the previous four rounds of the Europa League knock-out phase, recording six wins and two draws in that span with a 20:6 goal difference. Five of those eight Europa League games were finished in the over.
Forward Eden Hazard is leading the way for the Blues this season with 19 goals and 16 assists in all competitions. He’s the team’s top goalscorer and best assist-maker. Striker Olivier Giroud and winger Pedro both scored 12 goals, while midfielder Ruben Loftus-Cheek bagged ten goals in 40 apps. Winger Willian scored eight goals along with 14 assists in 55 outings in all competitions, while full-back Marcos Alonso added four goals and seven assists in 39 apps. The manager Maurizio Sarri has some serious problems to choose the best eleven, as Ruben Loftus-Cheek (Achilles tendon) and Antonio Rudiger (knee) are both sidelined, while N’Golo Kante (hamstring) is listed as questionable but should be able to play.
- Chelsea has recorded four wins, five draws, and a loss in its last ten games overall
- Both teams scored in five of the last eight contests overall
- Six of the last ten games overall had fewer than three goals in the total
The Gunners will have a huge motive in the Europa League Final, as they failed to earn the Champions League ticket through the English Premier League, finishing at the 5th spot of the table with 70 points out of 38 games and a 73:51 goal difference, just a point behind the fourth-placed Tottenham. Still, the Gunners will play in the Champions League next season if they beat the Blues on Wednesday. Arsenal eliminated BATE Borisov, Rennes, Napoli, and Valencia in the previous four rounds of the Europa League, recording six wins and two losses in the process with a 17:7 goal difference, while five of those eight contests had three or more goals in the total. The Gunners have won three of their last four games in all competitions along with one tie.
Striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is leading the Gunners this season with 31 goals in 50 appearances in all competitions, netting eight times in 11 outings in the Europa League. Forward Alexandre Lacazette is the team’s best assist-maker with 13 dishes in 48 apps, also scoring 19 goals in all competitions. Midfielder Aaron Ramsey scored six goals along with eight assists in 40 games this season, while his colleague Henrikh Mkhitaryan added six goals and seven assists. The manager Unai Emery won three Europa League titles with Sevilla in 2014, 2015, and 2016 and will look for his fourth win in four finals. Emery cannot count on Hector Bellerin (knee) and Rob Holding (knee), while Danny Welbeck (ankle) is listed as doubtful.
- Arsenal won six of its last ten games overall along with three losses and a tie
- Both teams scored in six of the last seven contests overall
- Six of the previous seven games overall had three or more goals in the total
Chelsea and Arsenal met each other two times this season, and each team was successful at home, while four of the previous seven head-to-head duels were finished in a draw. As I’ve mentioned, the Gunners will play in the Champions League next season only if they beat the Blues on this one, and I think it could be a motive that will decide the winner. Also, Unai Emery is still unbeaten in the Europa League finals, so I’m backing Arsenal to win the trophy.
I wouldn’t be surprised if we see a draw after 90 minutes, and whoever takes the lead, the other side should respond instantly. Hereof, picking both teams to find the net at -143 odds is another interesting wager, while a draw at +240 odds is for those bettors who want some greater wages.
The Pick: Arsenal to Win Outright (+110)
Additional Pick: Both Teams to Score YES (-143)