UEFA Europa Conference League quarter-final second legs: What to look out for
Thursday, April 14, 2022
An all-Dutch final remains an intriguing possibility and an endurance record can be broken if the UEFA Europa Conference League quarter-finals go the right way.
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The race for the UEFA Europa Conference League semi-finals looks set to throw up a number of photo finishes, and there are some historic achievements in the offing too.
Presented by Enterprise Rent-A-Car, we focus on the key plot lines.
Leicester / PSV vs Bodø/Glimt / Roma
Feyenoord / Slavia Praha vs Marseille / PAOK
Guess the winner of every tie from now until the end of the season to create your Europa Conference League bracket.
Feyenoord and PSV chasing clean sweep
One way or another, the first UEFA Europa Conference League winners will have a unique haul of trophies. Feyenoord and PSV Eindhoven would arguably have the most impressive credentials if they make it to the podium in Tirana, since a victory for either side would mean they have triumphed in all three of the biggest current UEFA club competitions (though neither have won the UEFA Super Cup or the now defunct UEFA Cup Winners' Cup).
Feyenoord won the European Cup (1969/70) and the UEFA Cup (1973/74 and 2001/02) in their pre-UEFA Champions League and UEFA Europa League incarnations, as did PSV (1987/88 and 1977/78, respectively). PSV can also set a new record of 21 European games in a single season if they reach the final and Bodø/Glimt lose their tie to Roma. All that and an all-Dutch decider is still a possibility.
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José Mourinho's little bit of history
Like Feyenoord and PSV, Roma coach José Mourinho has had his hands on both the Champions League and Europa League trophies, and can also complete a unique set with a Europa Conference League winners' medal.
Now 59, the self-declared 'Special One' made his name by winning the UEFA Cup (2002/03) and Champions League (2003/04) in successive seasons with Porto, then won the Champions League again with Inter Milan in 2009/10, and the Europa League in its new incarnation with Manchester United in 2016/17. If he triumphs again with Roma, he would be the first coach to win UEFA titles with four different clubs.
Bodø/Glimt chasing distance record
Norwegian title holders Bodø/Glimt have had a memorable season and a half, whatever happens in the decisive leg of their quarter-final against Roma. Having kicked off their adventure in the Champions League first qualifying round back in July, they are now closing in on a continental record, with Thursday's second leg at the Olimpico their 20th European match of the season.
Four clubs have enjoyed similarly long campaigns before: Basel, Bordeaux, Villarreal and most recently Salzburg, in their run to the 2017/18 Europa League semi-finals. However, no side has made it to 21 games yet; should Bodø/Glimt maintain their first-leg advantage, they will be certain to break new ground.
7 & 14 April: Quarter-finals
28 April & 5 May: Semi-finals
25 May: Final (National Arena, Tirana)