Luzern vs Xamax
Luzern had more than decent previous season as the team ended up at the third position and earned participation in Europa League - that they will start from the third qualifying round. They've ended the previous season with significantly less points than first two placed sides, but also were deservedly above the rest of the league.
During the pre-season friendly matches, the side had no loss as they firstly won over Wintherthur 3:1 and then had three draws - against Vaduz a goalless one and a 1:1 games against Lugano and Dynamo Kiev in the last game before the start of the season. They gave a really good performance against Dynamo, taking the lead in 58th minute with a goal from Grether. Ten minutes later Ukrainians managed to level up the result via Besiedin.
After getting the third position in the league last season, there's no other target for them but to get a victory against newly promoted side. Luzern had a lot of points earned in front of own fans and should continue in the same way.
Goalkeeper Omlin went to Basel for one million, while defensive midfielder Kryeziu went to ZUrich. Other players weren't that important, out of those who left and were allowed to leave the club. Goalkeeper Salvi came from Grasshoppers, while the side is expected to make few more moves during the transfer window.
Xamax looked more than impressive in the last season when they played in Challenge League and finished first being the most superior side in the league without any doubt. They have ended up the competition with three consecutive victories, but also with twenty one point more than second placed Schaffhausen. With twenty six victories, seven draws and just three defeats, the side looked like a strong promoting side way before it's end.
During the preparation period, players of Xamax had five matches firstly winning over amateur side Breitenrain 2:0. Then they have lost to Young Boys narrow 1:0 and finished the preparation in quite a style. They've recorded victories over Thun 1:2 and Lausanne 5:1 and finally, in the last rehearsal game last week they had a draw against Dutch giants from PSV 1:1.
Dutch side looked better on the field and were leading for important part of the game as they took the lead via Bergwijn in 19th minute, but thanks to their fighting spirit team from Switzerland they leveled up in second via Xhemajli.
No doubt that the side wants to avoid relegation battle as soon as possible, but the team will also look to impress and show themselves in a good way early in the season.
With exception of defensive Steve Lawson, not many important players have left Xamax this Summer. Few others have came, so the team should look bit stronger than the previous season in the end. Goalkeeper Minder came from Winterthur, striker Cicek from Schaffhausen, right back Fejzullahu from Partizani, offensive midfielder Kone from Feronikeli and another striker, Ademi from St Gallen.
Luzern is a favorite here, but I expect Xamax to appear here bit more relaxed and attacking too. As said, hosts are closer to get the victory, but the match seems like a perfect both teams to score and few more goals under valuable odds. Chances are surely over 50% in my eyes.
Luzern vs Xamax prediction
Over 2.5 goals & both teams to score @ 2.05 with Bet365