Schalke v PAOK Betting Tips: Drab affair on the cards at Veltins-Arena

Feb 21 2017

Having well and truly done a job on their opponents last week, German side Schalke have the luxury of coming back home with both a clean sheet and three precious away goals in the bag. As things stand, this tie is verging on pointless. PAOK were unable to put up much of a fight on their own patch, and it’s highly unlikely that the Greeks will be able to mount a serious challenge here.

With the tie seemingly dead and buried, a rather dull affair is expected here. Schalke know that all they need to do is remain switched on at the back and they’re through to the last-16, while the visitors will simply want the tie to be done and dusted. On this basis, both teams are likely to rest players with league commitments in mind.

Given the somewhat pointless nature of this second-leg, the bet that really stands out is ‘Under 2.5 Goals’. Schalke have done everything they need to do in this one and are more likely to save themselves rather than flooding forward in search of more goals, while PAOK probably won’t be able to muster anything more than last week’s rather tame attacking effort.

Aside from their win in Greece last Thursday, Schalke haven’t exactly scaled the heights in terms of goals recently. Markus Weinzierl’s side have scored just four goals in their last five home matches, none of which saw more than three match goals go in. In terms of match goals, it’s been a similar story for PAOK on the road of late. ‘Over 2.5 Goals’ has landed in just one of the Greek club’s last five away fixtures.

In knowing they need at least three goals without reply here, it’s hard to envisage the visitors coming into this match and giving everything they’ve got, especially when their efforts could be saved for an assault on 2nd place Panionios in the Greek Super League. At the same time, what with Schalke in a position of such comfort, the hosts will probably operate at less than full capacity in order to keep themselves in prime condition ahead of Sunday’s Bundesliga showdown against 4th place Hoffenheim.

It’s fair to say that this tie looks pretty much done and dusted and, therefore, an exciting goal-filled encounter just doesn’t seem likely. At 11/10, ‘Under 2.5 Goals’ appears to be over-priced and is certainly worth backing.

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