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European Midweek Accumulator: Cup action hots up across the continent

The French Cup and Copa del Rey are reaching their latter stages as the season wears on, while Napoli’s domination at the Serie A summit has done nothing to tame the raging battles below, including Juventus and Torino’s push for Europe.

The two sides come together in their first meeting since the Old Lady’s season was turned on its head by a points sanction, with the margins between them finer than ever. 

In France, PSG’s exit in the previous round means the French Cup has been blown wide open, while there is a similar story brewing in Spain, where only one of Barcelona and Real Madrid will make the final – Osasuna and Athletic Bilbao are facing off for the right to join them. 

Stakes high in Turin derby

WhatJuventus v Torino
WhereJuventus Stadium, Turin
When19:45, Tuesday 28th February
How to watchBT Sport 1
OddsJuventus 8/11, Draw 13/5, Torino 17/4 

The only league fixture in our selections kicks off our list on Tuesday night as the two Turin clubs clash at Juventus Stadium. 

Juventus’ points deduction means the pair are now separated by just one point, both lying just outside the European places. 

A result in the derby would be hugely significant for both – and not just in terms of bragging rights. Put simply, Juventus are the form team coming into the game and have won five and drawn one of their six matches since their 2-0 humiliation at home to Monza late in January. 

Torino’s win over Udinese three games ago is their only victory in five games and they come into the Derby della Mole as 17/4 underdogs. 

A draw is at 13/5, while Juventus can be backed to continue their momentum at 8/11

Grenoble into the lions’ den at Lyon

WhatLyon v Grenoble
WhereGroupama Stadium, Lyon
When20:10, Tuesday 28th February
How to watchN/A
OddsLyon 2/7, Draw 17/4, Grenoble 8/1

Lyon – joint-favourites to lift the French Cup, priced at 9/4 with Marseille – host second-tier Grenoble in the last eight on Tuesday.  

With PSG now out of the competition and Nantes and Lille also eliminated in the last-16, the door is open for the Lyonnais to carve a path to some cup glory that would not go amiss at the end of a relatively middling Ligue 1 campaign. 

OL sit ninth in the French top flight, the Champions League places a distant dream, and therefore Laurent Blanc’s men will not be taking the competition lightly as they look to lift the Groupama Stadium crowd. 

The visitors are veritable outsiders at 50/1 and came past fourth-tier Vierzon by a single goal to reach this stage and Blanc’s side – who have lost just one of their last eight matches – should prove one test too far for Grenoble, who are winless in three league matches. 

A home win is priced at 2/7, with a price of 17/4 saying the lower-league outfit can keep the tie level after 90 minutes; an unlikely away victory is at 8/1

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Lens looking formidable on two fronts

WhatNantes v Lens
WhereStade de la Beaujoire, Nantes
When17:15, Wednesday 1st March
How to watchN/A
OddsNantes 10/3, draw 5/2, Lens 3/4

There’s an all-Ligue 1 affair on the cards in Wednesday’s French Cup action as Lens travel to Nantes, both sides looking to take advantage of the absence of big names left in the event. 

Lens are third in the outright betting at 9/2 and were the victors in the league fixture between the two less than a fortnight ago, winning 3-1 at home. 

They take on a Nantes team who have lost three straight games – the Canaries are 13th in Ligue 1. Lens are flying, just two points behind Marseille in second and what’s more, can call on stellar away form that has seen them lose just once – against Lyon – on the road since mid-October – a run of 11 competitive matches. 

A price of 3/4 sees them extend that run with a win in normal time, while a stalemate can be backed at 5/2. Nantes are 10/3 to surprise their guests and reach the semi-finals. 

Osasuna and Athletic avoid heavyweights as dream remains alive

WhatOsasuna v Athletic Bilbao
WhereEstadio San Mames, Bilbao
When20:00, Wednesday 1st March
How to watchN/A
OddsOsasuna 2/1, Draw 21/10, Athletic Bilbao 29/20

Two sides faring well in LaLiga take their battle to the Copa del Rey on Wednesday evening. 

Osasuna, seventh, take on the side just below them in the table, Athletic Bilbao, in the first leg of their semi-final encounter that sees them avoid the giant pairing of Barcelona and Real Madrid, who meet on the other side of the draw. 

Osasuna are fourth-favourites at 5/1 outright, but fans may feel the stars are aligning after their win over Sevilla last time out saw them claim victory beyond regulation time for the third tie in a row. 

This encounter will obviously be a 90-minute affair, but odds of 21/10 say the scores will remain level at the turnaround. 

Neither team arrives on great form, with Osasuna winning one of their last five matches and Athletic just two of five. The hosts are 2/1 to open with victory, while an away win is the shortest option at 29/20.

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