Europa League » 3rd qualifying round
Belgian black & whites against Serbian black & whites. Only one leg is going to be played and Charleroi is going to be the host.
IMO these odds are ridiculous. I mean 1.80 on home win or even lower at some places, that's a joke if you ask me. I know Charleroi is the team from stronger league. I know also that they had impressive start of the season in Belgium with 6-0-0. But how tough schedule that was? Those six opponents in average has won only 9 pts each. The truth they had one really big win, that was road three points against Club Brugge, 0:1. In that match Charleroi even was without important player who wasn't allowed to play since he is on loan from Brugge. So, well done for that win but it was opening round of the season, they found Brugge underperforming maybe. Other than that, we could mention win over Antwerp who was top standings team season ago and also was competing in Europe but seems like Antwerp are weaker now.
I don't want to underestimate Charleroi. I know this squad is playing together for a while and they probably now reached the peak of its form over the years. But I still can't agree they should be favourite like this in any sense. Unlike Partizan who is practically regular participant of UEFA competitions group stages, we can't say Charleroi has such experience. Partizan in recent as well in long past, almost always was doing very well against opponents from this region (Belgium, Netherlands). Don't tell me that Charleroi is better than Dutch AZ Alkmaar or that they are better than Anderlecht from the time when Anderlecht was the best team in Belgium. Back then Partizan eliminated Anderlecht and was in Champions League group stage. With note, this today's Partizan is way better than Partizan who played against Anderlecht.
Team value assessment is also against Charleroi. Namely, Partizan except defender Pavlovic who moved to Monaco, completely kept the squad and theirs value is much higher than Charleroi's.
Home pitch isn't crucial here if you ask me. Namely these game are still without presence of fans.
The only that remains is this at first look weaker current form of Serbian team. They had trouble scoring in last few games, in both previous qualifying rounds as well in last round of Serbian league. But you should know that those two weak European opponents have played extremely defensive, they both literally parked the bus and sometimes it's tough to open the scoreboard against such teams. As for last game in Serbia, I think I don't need to repeat myself all the time. Completely circus league where Partizan doesn't have equal chances to fight for the title. Referees are finishing the job every round and the mentioned game was no exception. Completely regular goal was disallowed in the first half due to allegedly offside position. The replay showed it was regular goal for Partizan, there wasn't offside. Without such mistake, the game would be much easier later on, and it would not end only 0:1. Of course, in Serbia there is no VAR yet cause one team (you guess which) is not allowing it. So, while Partizan dealing with such refs "mistakes" round after round, Crvena zvezda plays in the league mainly friendly games against their numerous affiliated clubs. That's the picture of Serbian football in last few years.
Of course, here today with international referees, I expect refs to do the fair job. Also, no way Charleroi is going to play defensively like previous Partizan opponents. The host will attack and that suit to Partizan if you ask me.
I was researching a lot about Charleroi and I see they have two solid attackers, one from Jamaica and one from Iran. But defense is questionable and IMO not really tested so far. They have goalkeeper who very soon is going to turn 40 years of age. I heard their defense is a little bit slow. Left-Back position is especially critical cause they sold on that position very valuable player to Gent for big money. Partizan exactly on that attacking side (right winger) has very fast players. Japanese player Asano, while also Lazar Marković can play there (both are expected to start). Also on left winger young and super talented Filip Stevanović (with 8 million the highest valued player on the pitch) who very often moving from left to right.
The bottom line, I really think Partizan can make lot of trouble to Charleroi defense. That being said, also Both To Score probably is not bad option either. And I would probably go with that if the 1x2 odds are set more fair. IMO fair would be here if this is game somewhere around 50-50 odss. But, since instead of both teams being priced around 1.90 for Draw No Bet or AH (0) option, we have Partizan on such odds but for X2 Double Chance, I need to go with road team. On this visit I would take that every single day.
By the way, odds as high as 3.00 on Partizan to qualify are extremely value IMO, but I see this with nice chance to go to Extra Time and then who knows what could happen, while in that case (X in regular 90 minutes) my bet on Partizan +0.5 would be already winner. So, why be greedy when these odds 2.00 are very nice too.