Europa Conference League Betting Tips

Hibernian vs Aston Villa betting tips: Europa Conference League play-off round first leg preview, predictions, team news and odds

Hibernian vs Aston Villa odds and betting statistics

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Hibernian vs Aston Villa

Aston Villa to win 2-1 against Hibs- 8/1!


At 8/1, a £10 bet would return £90!

Hibernian vs Aston Villa

August 23, 2023

5:45 pm GMT+1

Hibernian vs Aston Villa match preview

The annual Edinburgh fringe festival is coming to a close right now, but the main attraction in Scotland’s capital this week is certainly this eagerly anticipated Battle of Britain.

Aston Villa are back in European competition for the first time since 2010, having finished seventh in the Premier League last season.

The 1982 European Cup winners though haven’t won a European tie for 15 years, dumped out in the Europa League play-offs in 2009 and 2010, both times by Rapid Wien.

Given that their supporters won’t require passports for this away game, the Villans will be desperate to get through to the group stages, something they’re widely expected to achieve.

It’s fair to say that Unai Emery’s team have made a mixed start to the new season, smashed 5-1 by Newcastle before hammering Everton 4-0 at Villa Park on Sunday.

John McGinn broke the deadlock, Douglas Luiz converted a penalty and Leon Bailey lashed home a third before Jhon Durán came off the bench to slot home his first in claret and blue.

So now, will Aston Villa leave Leith with a first leg advantage?

Hibernian meantime have already come through two ties just to get this far, aiming to reach a major UEFA group stage for the first time ever.

First, despite actually losing in Andorra la Vella, Lee Johnson’s side ultimately smashed Inter Club d’Escaldes 7-3 on aggregate, scoring 6+ in a European home game for just the second time in over half a century.

Then, in a substantially tougher tie, Hibs managed to overcome Luzern, courtesy of a thrilling 3-1 victory at home, followed by last Thursday’s hard-fought 2-2 draw at Swissporarena.

Élie Youan and Martin Boyle both on target on a famous night in Switzerland.

The Hibees won their first domestic match of the season on Sunday, ousting Raith Rovers 2-1 in the League Cup, but is fair to say that their full focus right now is on this competition.

Hibernian are attempting to knock out English opposition for the very first time, having previously been beaten by Leeds in 1968 and 1973 as well as Liverpool in both 1970 and 1975.

So, ahead of the return leg in the Midlands in eight nights time, Hibs will feel this first leg at Easter Road is must win as they seek to cause a massive upset.

Hibernian team news

Lee Johnson made six changes for Sunday’s win over Raith, but could, more or less, revert to the team that drew in Switzerland a week ago.

Martin Boyle and Élie Youan will both remain dangerous down the flanks, supporting new striker Dylan Vente who’s arrived for £700,000 which, for Hibs, is big money.

Left-back Lewis Stevenson will make his 568th appearance for the club, only Gordon Smith, Arthur Duncan and Pat Stanton have played more times for Hibernian.

Rocky Bushiri is back to full fitness, but club captain Paul Hanlon and Will Fish could continue as the centre-back pairing.

Predicted XI (4-2-3-1): Marshall; Miller, Fish, Hanlon, Stevenson; Newell, Campbell, Levitt, Boyle, Youan; Vente.

Aston Villa team news

Unai Emery is, of course, a four-times Europa League winning manager, so expect him to take this tie very seriously.

That said, Villa are expected to make numerous changes, including Robin Olsen being rotated in for Emi Martínez in goal.

This tie is a homecoming for captain John McGinn, who started the 2016 Scottish Cup Final victory over Rangers as Hibs won that competition for the first time in 114 years.

Diego Carlos could make his first start for over a year at centre-back, after sitting out almost the entirety of last season due to injury.

Having opened his Villa account on Sunday, Jhon Durán is set to lead the line, while Nicolò Zaniolo could be in line for a debut, having joined on loan from Galatasaray.

Tyrone Mings and Emi Buendía have both suffered ACL injuries already this month, both of which are big blows, while Jacob Ramsey and Àlex Moreno are also sidelined with less long-term issues.

Predicted XI: (4-3-3): Olsen; Chambers, Carlos, Torres, Digne; Tielemans, Kamara, McGinn; Traoré, Durán, Coutinho.

UEFA Europa Conference League play-off round results & fixtures

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Ben Gray

Ben Gray

Arsenal fan – follow them over land and sea (and Leicester); sofa Celtic supporter; a bit of a football '"encyclopedia".

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