The official website for European football

Parma look for European lift

Published: Thursday 21 October 2004, 12.59CET
Group B: Winless in Serie A, Parma FC visit Athletic Club Bilbao, while R. Standard de Liège are in Bucharest.
Published: Thursday 21 October 2004, 12.59CET

Parma look for European lift

Group B: Winless in Serie A, Parma FC visit Athletic Club Bilbao, while R. Standard de Liège are in Bucharest.

Parma FC's 14th consecutive European campaign continues with a visit to northern Spain to face Athletic Club Bilbao. Whether it provides a welcome distraction from their wretched start to the domestic season remains to be seen, however.

'Difficult period'
Parma have not won yet in Serie A, taking only three points from six games. Their coach Silvio Baldini offered to resign after Sunday's 3-1 defeat at Brescia Calcio but club officials persuaded him to stay. "It's a difficult period for us," he said. "Now we have to work hard and run, not talk."

Regulars rested
Baldini will rest a number of first-team regulars in Bilbao, including Sébastien Frey, Alberto Gilardino, Marco Marchionni, Fabio Simplicio, Cesare Bovo and Vincenzo Grella, who are all expected to start on the bench. Youngsters Gaetano Grieco and Francesco Ruopolo will lead the attack.

'Not easy'
For all Parma's problems, Athletic will not be taking them lightly. Midfielder Francisco Yeste said: "Whoever plays, we know it's not going to be easy because Parma's history in European competition goes back a long way." The Basque club beat Málaga CF 1-0 at the weekend.

Radoi not ready
In tonight's other match, FC Steaua Bucuresti face R. Standard de Liège. Steaua are without key men in goalkeeper Vasili Khomutovski and captain Mirel Radoi. The latter has a knee injury and although he has been training, coach Walter Zenga said playing him was "out of the question. He has not played for two months". Defender Tiberiu Curt is also sidelined and Gabriel Bostina suspended, but Florentin Dumitru returns.

High Standard
Standard have been on a good run lately and sit fourth in the Belgian First Division. Coach Dominique D'Onofrio is missing only Wamberto and Sérgio Conceição, while Jonathan Walasiak's ankle problem means he will start on the bench again.

Last updated: 21/10/04 23.08CET

Related information

Team profiles

  • © 1998-2015 UEFA. All rights reserved.
  • The UEFA EUROPA LEAGUE word, the UEFA Europa League logo and the UEFA Europa League trophy are protected by trade marks and/or copyright of UEFA. No use for commercial purposes may be made of such trade marks. Use of signifies your agreement to the Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy.