Ludogorets vs Dinamo Zagreb preview

July 17, 2012
By: Matthew Clarke

The wonder from Razgrad face a tough task in their first ever European game seeing they tackle Dinamo Zagreb, one of the best sides from the Balkans.

Despite being founded in 2001, PFC Ludogorets are on the road to become a real force to be reckoned with in Bulgarian football.

After achieving back to back promotions in 2010 and 2011, the club from Razgrad won the Bulgarian elite division last season, finishing the league campaign one point above giants CSKA Sofia.

Having also won the Bulgarian Cup and the Super Cup, we can honestly say Ludogorets are currently the strongest side in Bulgaria.

Despite possessing a lot of quality in the squad and the arrival of players like Moti, Cvorovic, Burgzorg, Junior and Tunchev, the hosts will have their work cut out for them in the first leg, and odds of 2.80 (9/5) offered by Betfair on home win do not look too tempting.

Probable starting line-up (4-2-3-1): Golubovic – Minev, Guldan, Barthe, Junior Caicara – Kostadinov, Genchev – Stoyanov, Marcelinho, Ivanov – Gargorov.

The most decorated club in Croatia have recently won their seventh league title in a row, which allowed them to fully focus on chasing their European dream.

After reaching the Champions League group stages last term, Dinamo are looking to repeat the feat this season, but they will have to work hard in order to eliminate PFC Ludogorets.

The Croatian champions did well to keep hold of their star players during the summer, while they brought new coach Ante Cacic to replace heavily criticized Krunoslav Jurcic.

Dinamo looked really good in pre-season, especially in games against Spartak Moscow and Dynamo Kiev, which implies odds of 2.63 (13/8) offered by Stan James on away win could be worth a shot.

Josip Simunic and Ivan Krstanovic miss out through injury, whereas Jerko Leko is suspended for this game.

Probable starting line-up (4-2-3-1): Kelava – Vrsaljko, Tonel, Vida, Pokrivac – Kovacic, Badelj – Rukavina, Sammir, Ibanez – Beciraj.

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