Europa League Group J Preview & Predictions – Akhisar / Krasnodar / Sevilla / Standard Liege

Akhisar Belediyespor

* Won the Turkish Cup last season
* Were promoted to the Turkish Super Ligue in 2012
* Had to ground share as theirs was not fit for standard
* Moved into a new ground this season
* Finished 11th last season
* Have finished between 14th – 7th every season
* Yet to win this season – played 4 lost 2 drew 2
* This will be a European adventure for them – first time in Europe

FC Krasnodar

* Finished 4th in the Russian Premier League last season
* Lost to Red Star Belgrade in the Europa League last 32 last season
* Very good away from home – picked up the most points away in the Russian Premier League
* Had 2 managers last season
* Mura Musayev has been given the job full time this year – caretaker at the end of last season

Sevilla

* Finished 7th in La Liga last season
* Runners up in the Copa Del Rey – Lost to Barca 5-0
* Lost in the Quarter Finals of the Champions League against Bayern Munich 2-1 on arg
* Won the Europa League in 13/14, 14/15 and 15/16
* Lots of transfers in and out in the summer

Standard Liege

* Runners Up in the Belgian League last season – behind Club Brugge
* Not been Champions since 08/09
* Lost to Ajax in the Champions League Qualifying 5-2 on arg
* Won 3 of 6 games this season
* Michel Preud’homme is the manager again – 3rd stint in charge

Verdict:

Another hard group to call
Sevilla are by far the stand out team in the group – should win it
Krasnodar and Liege will be fighting it out for 2nd place
Akhisar are likely to be the whipping boys in this group
They did well to qualify – it would be like Burnley being in Europe

Prediction:

Winner: Sevilla
Runner Up: Krasnodar
3rd: Standard Liege
4th: Akhisar Belediyespor

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