Those closing comments about the Torino game , also apply to Inter of course and if Wolfsburg play close to their best and especially keep the tempo up, the visitors are going to be in for a very long evening. Inter conceded three at Celtic in the previous round and it could have been five and this is team not used to being under the constant pressure which the Wolves will apply and one goal could quickly become two or three. We are already on the hosts to win the competition at a big price.....
The visitors got the attention of the footballing world on Friday night when they put four goals past Bayern Munich , led by an amazing high energy performance from Kevin de Bruyne, who scored twice and also contributed his 11th assist of the season. Bayern had only conceded four goals previously all season through 17 league starts and whilst most teams might have sat back and basked in the glory of that huge win, the Wolves got busy and in a massive statement of intent, completed the signing of André Schürrle from Chelsea for circa 30m €. That has left everyone in no doubt about how VfL see themseleves over the next year or two, a very big player in both domestic and European terms. They also made sure that de Bruyne was also left in doubt about how highly they value him and an already lengthy and lucrative contract is about to be increased and extended until 2020, which I view as a clever move with a new "star" arriving on the scene.
Schürrle is apparently going to take part in a short workout with the rest of the squad this morning, but is not expected to make his debut until Saturday, but his arrival is a really big deal in Germany and after his success in Brazil and West London, he brings with him a winning mentality and will force the other squad members to up their game still further and looks incredibly good business. It is going to be very difficult for them to close that eight point gap on Bayern at the top of the table, but I feel they will want to give it a go and staying within a single digit of the Bavarian giants would be a major achievement and closing it, offer so much for next season. They are currently seven points clear of BMG in third and if they could really push on through the next 3-4 weeks, really cement a Champions League spot early and then look at other targets, which perhaps they are already doing. We have spoken a lot about the Europa League and how the competion, and the last year or two of the UEFA Cup, has been dominated by teams from Eastern Europe and the Iberian Peninsula, but we have no Porto or Benfica this year and the round of 32 and 16 is always testing for the Eastern teams coming off such a long break, Villarreal and Sevilla look decent representatives for Spain, but are both involved in what looks certain to be a season long battle with Valencia for fourth, elsewhere , there are a lot of teams who have been priced up on name alone. If the Wolves can find a way past Sporting this month, I am sure that we will see several of those "names" drop out and Wolfsburg might be in position to let their focus switch to a European title. There is still some 21.0 around for Wolfsburg to win the Europa League, even bigger in a place or two and if you can find it, or close, I suggest we try 1 unit for now, we can take a closer look at this competition after the round of 32 ties .
They come into this on the back of their first defeat in 15 starts at Augsburg at the weekend, that was an infortunate loss and a game they should have got something from, but it will have served as a reality check and also effectively ended the dream of catching Bayern in the Bundesliga, so now it will surely be all about the Europa League and I expect a hungry and very motivated host to get back to winning ways.
1.25 units Wolfsburg -1.25 ball 2.42 asian line/Sportsmarket.