Preview: Dinamo Tbilisi vs. Astana

Preview: Dinamo Tbilisi vs. Astana

Dinamo Tbilisi and Astana will renew hostilities when they meet for the second leg of their Champions League qualification showdown at the Boris Paitchadze Dinamo Arena on Wednesday.

Following a 1-1 draw in Kazakhstan last week, the two sides will lock horns in the Georgian capital and battle it out for a place in the second qualifying round.

A 57th-minute equaliser from Gabriel Sigua saw Dinamo Tbilisi snatch a 1-1 draw at the Astana Arena last week, after Abat Aymbetov had put the hosts ahead inside 11 minutes.

Despite notching eight shots to Astana’s 12, the Georgian outfit registered more attempts on target than the Kazakh club, although Astana produced more than twice as many dangerous attacks throughout the contest

Thanks to last week’s draw, Dinamo Tbilisi head into the second leg on a four-game unbeaten run across all competitions, while the Blue-White have suffered only two defeats in their previous nine encounters.

It is also worth noting that Giorgi Tchiabrishvili’s men are the highest scorers in the Georgian top flight, having netted an impressive 44 goals in 19 league outings this term, although they remain eight points shy of first-placed Dinamo Batumi.

As for Astana, they took an early lead in the previous meeting and went on to dominate large spells of the game on home soil, but Grigori Babayan’s side were unable to chalk up a first-leg advantage on home soil.

Still, the Yellow-and-Blues can take confidence from their consistent performances and positive results in recent times, as they have suffered a solitary defeat in their last 17 matches across all competitions, picking up 12 wins and four draws in the process.

With 16 games in the books, Astana find themselves second in the Kazakhstan Premier League – one point behind table-topping Ordabasy – having recorded 12 wins, two draws and two losses this season.

The Yellow-and-Blues clinched six successive top-flight titles between 2014 and 2019 before regaining the domestic crown in 2022, so Babayan’s men will be eager to make an impact in Europe this year.

Dinamo Tbilisi Champions League form:

Dinamo Tbilisi form (all competitions):

Astana Champions League form:

Astana form (all competitions):

We say: Dinamo Tbilisi 2-1 Astana (Dinamo Tbilisi to win 3-2 on aggregate)
With the home crowd behind them, Dinamo Tbilisi should have what it takes to reach the second qualifying round at the expense of Astana, who look set to pay the price for their wastefulness in the first leg.

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