We are preparing for the beginning of the new season, which will start with the duels of the Romanian teams in the Champions League and Europa League qualification matches. However, football fans’ enthusiasm should not be too great, especially if we look at the odds provided by the online sports betting agencies for our teams’ qualification chances.
For a long time now, only FCSB and Astra maintain our country’s coefficient at a decent level, as the other teams have failed to qualify in the European Cups for years. Champions League seems to remain a forbidden dream for League 1 clubs, especially if we think about what happened this summer with CFR. Dan Petrescu’s departure is more important than the departure of any player in the championship.
CFR Cluj will qualify to the Champions League group round: Yes @ 12.00, No @ 1.01
And as if the break-up with Super Dan was not enough, the team from Cluj will have an extremely difficult task because they will not be the top series players at the draw, so they will have top opponents. In the second round of the preliminaries, 99% they will meet the Swedish champion Malmo FF, but if they qualify, they will meet stronger opponents.
Edward Iordănescu proved in the previous season that he is a coach with potential, but his lack of experience in such challenges will be conclusive. In the previous season, Astra, coached by Iordănescu Jr., was eliminated in round III by Oleksandria, a modest team from Ukraine. It is true that, unlike the freshly-formed team from the start of the last season, this time Iordănescu will coach an already-made team, bound and “full of champions” – as Dan Petrescu himself said.
All in all, it is not surprising that operators have set the tiny odds for the prediction regarding CFR’s qualification in Champions League. The best option for the Transylvanians is to surpass the Swedes and then hope to qualify for Europa League groups.
As for FC Viitorul, there is not much to say. Gheorghe Hagi’s team broke up this summer with other major players, and the project itself seems to be no longer of interest to the King, who seems to be preparing to coach team from abroad.
FC Viitorul Constanța will qualify to the Europa League group round: Yes @ 17.00
Craiova will be the last team to enter the competition, and its opponent was not yet known when this article was written. Mitriță and the company will start the competition only on 9 August, on the occasion of the tournament run of the 3rd round of the Europa League preliminaries.
CS U Craiova will qualify to the Europa League group round: Yes @ 6.00, No @ 1.11
Even if they have the upper hand of entering the competition later and being better prepared after the departure of the international player Alexandru Băluță, it is hard to believe that the Oltenians could go through two preliminary rounds where they will encounter superior opponents, because they will not be top series players. In fact, the only Romanian team that will have this quality is FCSB.
FCSB will qualify to the Europa League group round: Yes @ 2.80, No @ 1.40
Even if parting with several important players, the team trained by Nicolae Dică can boast some experience in the European Cups; let us remember that Gnohere and the company were eliminated in the sixteenths of the previous edition of Europa League by Lazio. Most likely, FCSB will meet Slovenia’s Rudar Velenje in the second round of the preliminaries, a game that will prove to be a mere formality for the red and blue team.
As it will be the lead in all preliminary tours, we expect the Gigi Becali’s funded team to qualify in Europa League without too much trouble. Interesting are also the odds for the phase in which the team led by Nicolae Dică will be eliminated.
Elimination round – FCSB:
- Preliminary round II @ 4.50
- Preliminary round III @ 3.50
- Play-off @ 2.25
- Group round @ 3.00
- 16th finals @ 40.00
- 8th finals @ 80.00
- Quarter finals @ 150.00
- Semi-finals @ 300.00
- Final @ 500.00
- Winner @ 1000.00
The 40.00 odds for Romania’s vice-champion to repeat last season’s performance seems extremely tempting, especially as the team could substantially strengthen itself after the qualification, in the characteristic manner that has already been used by its employer in recent years.
Moreover, let us not forget that FCSB has the fifth best coefficient among the teams that will compete in the second round of the preliminaries, which means that once qualified in groups, the Romanian team is very likely to be part of the second value draw box, which would facilitate accessible opponents.
And if everything goes well for the red and -blue team, and last decade’s luck in random draws continues in the same manner, such a bet with 40.00 odds seems to be a valuable one. However, this does not mean that the team coached by Nicolae Dică could not be eliminated even before the group phase, but overall, the odds seem to be too good to be ignored by punters who can be patient for several months in order to get a substantial gain.
We wish lots of luck to all the Romanian teams involved in European challenges, but we can put our money only on the teams that have real chances to access the Europa League groups, namely vice-champion FCSB and CFR Cluj, the official champion.
by Valentin Macovei