Wolfsburg get another tough Europa League tie against Benitez’s Napoli
Europa League favourites Wolfsburg (now 7/2 from 3/1 with Coral) and Napoli (5/1 from 4/1) have drawn each other in the quarter-finals.
Goals from key performers Kevin De Bruyne and Bas Dost have helped Die Wolfe emerge as leading contenders to lift this European trophy. Belgium international De Bruyne, a reported target of Premier League champions Manchester City, has particularly impressed, scoring five times and making as many assists in continental competition.
Wolfsburg’s defence will have to contend with Argentina goal threat Gonzalo Higuain, who hit a Europa League last 16 hat-trick against Dinamo Moscow. Napoli also boast a coach, in Rafa Benitez, who has won this competition before (with Chelsea) as recently as 2013.
The Spaniard is one of three managers to lift such European silverware before that are still in with a shout of further glory. One of those others shall definitely be eliminated with Unai Emery’s holders Sevilla (5/1 to retain) taking on Zenit St Petersburg (6/1 from 9/2), coached by another ex-Chelsea boss Andre Villas-Boas.
Everton’s conquerors Dynamo Kiev (cut to 10/1 from 12/1) face Fiorentina, who had three defenders score in their all Serie A last 16 encounter with Roma. Vincenzo Montella had been tipped to struggle, as the Viola were without sidelined strikers Mario Gomez and Giuseppe Rossi, but his team are now 5/1 shots (from 13/2) to win the Europa League.
Completing the final eight draw are outsiders Club Brugge and Dnipro, another Ukrainian outfit. Neither side are fancied to go all the way and win this continental competition at odds of 14/1 apiece (from 18/1).
Like the Champions League quarter-final line-up, learned earlier on the same day, there are three or four sides that harbour realistic hopes of winning the Europa League. Wolfsburg are worthy favourites after humbling Italian heavyweights Inter Milan, but being up against Benitez opens things up nicely.
Europa League quarter-final draw:
Sevilla v Zenit St Petersburg
Dnipro v Club Brugge
Dynamo Kiev v Fiorentina
Wolfsburg v Napoli