|MUN (-186) @ pinnacle|
7* Manchester United (3:00 ET): This may finally be the year that a trophy is lifted by Manchester United. No, they aren’t going to win the Premier League (10 points back of Man City), but they are the favorites to win the Europa League, a competition where they’ve done quite well in the past. This year’s run, in particular, has been quite impressive. They’ve eliminated La Liga’s Real Sociedad and Granada both 4-0 on aggregate and in between got rid of Serie A side AC Milan. For this Europa League semi final matchup, it’s another Italian side, AS Roma, whose recent form couldn’t be worse coming into this one.
Roma is winless in its last four across all competitions, including perhaps its most embarrassing loss of the Serie A season on Sunday as they fell 3-2 to a Cagliari side that may end up being relegated. The recent downturn has Roma off the pace to play European football next season. Not only have they lost two of three to bottom of the table Serie A sides, but it was a 1-1 draw against Ajax Amsterdam the last time we saw them here in the Europa League. While that was still good enough to allow Roma to progress 3-2 on aggregate, the semis will be a giant step up in class.
Manchester United, who is looking to finish off an unbeaten April across all competitions, is working on a six-match unbeaten streak coming into this one. They are also unbeaten in their last 17 home matches in the Europa League, winning 13. While United has infamously flamed out in multiple past semifinals since the start of last year, Roma has not been to a final in European football in 30 years. Roma has just one win in England in their last 17 tries, including 10 losses. They’ve won just one of their last eight Serie A matches on the road and I don’t see them being successful today at Old Trafford. 7* Manchester United
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