Thursday, 14 July 2016

Dinamo Minsk vs St Patrick’s Athletic Europa League Match Preview And Prediction - July 14, 2016


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Thursday will mark the first ever meeting between these two clubs, Dinamo Minsk have won 75% of their last eight home games and kept a clean sheet in 63% of them, whilst St Patrick's Athletic have lost 75% of their last eight away days and failed to score in 50% of them.

Right back Aleksey Kozlov and centre back Umaru Bangura have been ruled out of this clash with knee ligament injuries. But centre back Roman Begunov could return for the hosts.

Attacking midfielder Jack Bayly is the only injury concern for the visitors.

Dinamo Minsk had a fairly easy time of things in the Europa League 1st qualifying round earlier this month. They beat Spartaks Jumala 2-1 in the first leg and followed it up with a 2-0 victory away from home to make for a comfortable 4-1 aggregate win.

This continues their overall good form across the board. They have now won seven of their last nine in all competitions and find themselves in 3rd position in the Belarus Premier League, although the dominant BATE are already nine points clear at the top of the table.

Dinamo Minsk will feel confident coming into this tie as well. They have a relatively successful history in the Europa League and have made the group stages in each of the last two seasons. They haven’t been eliminated at this stage of the competition since the 2009/10 season either, so they have plenty of reasons to feel good about their chances on Thursday.

St Patrick’s Athletic haven’t got the same sort of European pedigree as their opponents. They have never made it as far as the group stages and have been eliminated in either the 1st or 2nd qualifying rounds in their last three years running.

They only just scraped through the 1st qualifying round this year. They beat Jeunesse D’esch 1-0 at home and looked to be heading towards extra time as they trailed 1-0 coming into the final 15 minutes of the second leg, but they managed to grab and goal and, despite conceding again later, progressed on away goals.

St Patrick’s Athletic’s form isn’t something to be overly proud of though. That 1-0 win at home was their only victory in their last six games, with all of the other five ending in defeat. Away from home they have lost four in a row and six of their last eight in all competitions. They have failed to score in four of these as well.

Dinamo Minsk have won six of their last eight at home and kept a clean sheet five times, and I’m expecting them to keep a tight ship at the back on Thursday as well. My prediction is for Dinamo Minsk to Win to Nil, and odds of 8/13 for this outcome look fair to me. I’m going for a 2-0 correct score prediction at 7/2 as well.

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