Europe’s second-tier competition returns to action on April 13 with the quarter-final draw having determined the fate and path of the remaining eight teams in this season’s campaign. Juventus beat SC Freiburg 3-0 on aggregate to reach the quarter-finals, Feyenoord cruised past Shaktar Donetsk, Manchester United decapitated Real Betis, Sevilla and Sporting CP progressed past Fenerbahce and Arsenal respectively, Bayer Leverkusen beat Ferencvaros and a couple of games which saw Union Saint-Gillosie and AS Roma as well make the last eight.
It"s not as intriguing and compelling as the UEFA Champions League but there still is some drama to be experienced in the Europa League this season with the likes of Juventus and Manchester United still present at this stage of the competition.
It"s also an entirely different atmosphere with none of the teams which made it to this stage last season present in this year"s quarter-finals.
And so, let"s get down to the 2022/23 UEFA Europa League quarter-finals.
Union Saint-Gillosie vs Bayern Leverkusen
The Belgian outfit and German side go head to head in this one. The latter topped their Europa League group with 13 points, ahead of Germany"s Union Berlin, SC Braga and Swedish, Malmo FF.
Bayern Leverkusen are in the Europa League courtesy of a fall from grace from the Champions League, where Porto topped a relatively easy group B while Club Brugge followed through. A transfer to the Europa League followed by wins over AS Monaco and Ferencvaros in the knock-out round playoffs and last 16 respectively have seen the German side book a spot in the quarter-finals where they go against the sensational Belgian side.
Les Unionistes Union 60 defeated Union Berlin 6-3 on aggregate to reach the quarter-finals thanks to goals from Teuma, Amani and Lapoussin. The Belgian side had earlier held the Germans to a 3-3 draw at home.
Leverkusen will need to be wary here. Xabi Alonso and his men would be needing to approach the game with much seriousness and caution.
They may look a small team but are capable of causing all kinds of upset. Being able to pull that kind of a string against third place Berlin was really commendable and Karel Geraerts"s men would most likely be stopping at nothing till they achieve their goals.
Leverkusen vs Union Saint-Gillosie key stats
- Leverkusen are unbeaten in their last eight games across all competitions.
- Xabi Alonso"s men have lost seven home fixtures and eight away fixtures this season.
- Union SG are also unbeaten in their last six fixtures across all competitions this season.
Leverkusen vs Union Saint-Gillosie key players
Leverkusen: Moussa Diaby(11 goals)
Union Saint-Gillosie: Victor Boniface(14 goals)
Leverkusen vs Union Saint Gillosie Head to Head
Both sides would be meeting for the first time in history when they lock horns at the BayArena on Thursday
Main image credit Embed from Getty Images