International flair is only provided by the club names

On paper, the match between Marseille and Ajax Amsterdam reads like Champions League football. At the moment, however, both clubs should humbly enjoy every breath even in the UEFA Europa League. If you look at the table in France and the Netherlands, the 2024/25 international season would be played without the participation of these clubs. Nothing is possible at national level. This makes it all the more important to show a different face in European business and drive forward their own development process against a renowned opponent

In the recent past, it would have been virtually unthinkable for odds of no more than 1.63 to be offered on a home win for OM in a competitive match between Marseille and Ajax Amsterdam. The Dutch record champions’ unparalleled season has made it possible. After the change in the coaching bench, however, an upward trend can also be seen in the “Godenzonen”. However, it remains to be seen whether this will continue in the Europa League

Another important point that should not be overlooked in the Marseille vs Ajax Amsterdam predictions relates to the constellation in this Group B match. The French side currently lead the standings with eight points and have the best chance of progressing to the next round. At the bottom of the table are the Dutch, who are probably still realistically aiming for third place at most and the associated continuation in the Conference League, but still have a mini-chance of finishing in the top two. A surprise away win at the Stade Velódrome on Thursday would be a prerequisite

Marseille – statistics & current form

Gennaro Gattuso would certainly have imagined a different start to his tenure at Olympique Marseille. The Italian world champion has taken his place on the bench in nine competitive matches since signing in September. There have been three wins, three draws and three defeats. The discrepancy between the performances in Ligue 1 and the Europa League is immediately apparent.

The former midfielder and his team suffered all three defeats in the French top flight. In six attempts in Ligue 1, this meant just five points out of a possible 18. At international level, on the other hand, they picked up seven points from three matches. In addition to a 2-2 draw at home to English giants Brighton (2-2), Gattuso celebrated two crucial victories against AEK Athens, which opened the door to the knockout phase of the Europa League

OM’s feel-good oasis is the Europa League

Nonetheless, the fairly comfortable starting position with a four-point lead over the third-placed team in Group B should not hide the fact that OM are currently a long way from consistently good performances or at least a steady upward trend. At the weekend, for example, there was only a 1-1 draw in Strasbourg in Ligue 1. They have not won a game in France’s top flight since the beginning of October. Twelfth in the table, “Les Phoceens” have long since lost sight of the top three they were aiming for.

Particularly worrying continues to be the far too harmless offense, which has managed just one goal in the last four league games, scoring a total of just 13 times in twelve Ligue 1 matches played and coming away completely empty-handed on six occasions. Although there is not much evidence of their lack of finishing in the Europa League and Gattuso’s side usually show a completely different face on Thursdays than at weekends, we find it difficult to place a bet on OM delivering a spectacle in attack.

The odds on a clean sheet for the home keeper are more interesting between Marseille and Ajax Amsterdam, because with only 14 goals conceded in the league and one goal conceded in the last two games against AEK Athens, the former defensive ace seems to have turned the right screws in the medium term, at least when working against the ball

Predicted Marseille line-up:

Ajax Amsterdam – Statistics & current form

Ajax Amsterdam made over 150 million euros from player sales in the summer. Including loan players, almost 20 players left the club. In return, around 110 million euros were spent and invested in new professionals. However, instead of finding a good balance of talent and quality players among the new additions, Sven Mislintat, who was responsible for the transfers in Amsterdam, gave his critics plenty to attack, lured mediocre players to the Ijsselmeer at overpriced prices and received the receipt for his failure after just a few weeks – in the form of his dismissal.

Meanwhile, the Dutch record champions are trying to pick up the pieces and somehow pull the cart out of the mud. Maurice Steijn, who was only introduced as the new coach in July, is already history again. Club legend John van’t Schip was entrusted with the complicated task of somehow bringing the disastrous season to a conciliatory end. However, a glance at the table shows just how difficult this task is. In eighth place, Ajax have 24 (!) points fewer than leaders PSV Eindhoven. Even the fourth-placed team is already twelve points behind them

The focus is on gaining experience

Despite this, things have recently taken a positive turn for the “sons of God”. In the league, Ajax celebrated three wins and one draw in four games under the new coach. However, the only competitive defeat came in the Europa League in a 2-0 loss at home to Brighton. Apart from that, it has to be said that the Red & Whites have only been able to celebrate the aforementioned successes against opponents who are clearly inferior in terms of quality. An upward trend? Yes! Reason for euphoria? No!

That’s exactly why we’re predicting a home win between Marseille and Ajax Amsterdam. On the one hand, the extremely rejuvenated team is still paying too much tuition money at international level, while on the other, the “Godenzonen” have now been waiting for a full success in the Europa League for eight matches. The Dutch record champions are also clearly weaker away from home than at home.

Similar to the last three EL matchdays, however, the approach of the visitors, who are still not brimming with confidence, must be to focus on defense first. After conceding three goals in the first leg against OM, they “only” conceded four more in the three matches in question. There were no major defeats. However, the increased stability was also accompanied by a reduced offensive threat, which is why we are also considering the odds for a maximum of three goals in the course of the match for the upcoming group game between Marseille and Ajax Amsterdam.

Predicted Ajax Amsterdam line-up:

Marseille – Ajax Amsterdam head-to-head comparison / H2H result

The paths of the renowned clubs have already crossed seven times in international business. Ajax Amsterdam currently lead the head-to-head with three wins. OM celebrated two wins, while two meetings ended in draws. There was also no winner in the first leg of the current EL group stage in Amsterdam with a 3-3 draw. While attacking soccer was the order of the day at the beginning of October, we expect the second leg on Thursday evening at 21:00 to be a little more tame and low-scoring. No wonder, as both teams now have different coaches with new philosophies on the bench

Marseille – Ajax Amsterdam tip

There are many indications that Olympique Marseille and Brighton will make it through to the knockout phase of the Europa League in Group B. The French in particular are considered to have an exorbitantly good chance of progressing. Les Phoceens are currently leading the four-team pool with eight points. A draw could therefore be enough to secure a ticket to the next round ahead of time.

However, if we believe the betting odds between Marseille and Ajax Amsterdam, then a commanding home win is in the air. The 1.63 on a three-goal win for the hosts has an implied probability of 60%. The towering role as favourites can be explained primarily by the fact that nothing has gone right for Ajax this season, especially away from home, and that the very young team makes too many individual mistakes that are immediately punished at this level

Because we have taken note of the fact that the visitors have stabilized somewhat under John van’t Schip and at the same time have to take into account that OM is still struggling to create and exploit scoring chances, we have decided to place a combined bet on the 1X & Under 3.5 between Marseille and Ajax Amsterdam.

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