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Europa Conference League stats: Alternative stars of the semi-final first legs

Who made the most saves, crosses, clearances, ball recoveries and completed passes in the UEFA Europa Conference League semi-final first legs?

UECL - Swissquote - Trendsetters - MD13
Conference League Trendsetters: Semi-final first legs

UEFA.com has a treasure trove of statistics to highlight the players starring in the UEFA Europa Conference League, Europe's newest club competition.

In this piece, presented by Swissquote, we sift through the data to see who earned top billing across a number of match-defining metrics in the semi-final first legs.

Conference League stats


Most passes completed

Highlights: Feyenoord 3-2 Marseille
Highlights: Feyenoord 3-2 Marseille

67 William Saliba (Marseille)
66 Boubacar Kamara (Marseille)
64 Ricardo Pereira (Leicester)
62 Jonny Evans (Leicester)
51 Wesley Fofana (Leicester)

Regular readers will know that the Leicester defence feature more often than not in this particular section, such is their commitment to building from the back, but it is OM central defender Saliba and midfielder Kamara who take the acclaim this week following their 3-2 defeat at Feyenoord.

Crosses completed

5 Dimitri Payet (Marseille)
4 Marc Albrighton (Leicester)
2 Orkun Kökçü (Feyenoord)

Payet has been instrumental to much of Marseille's attacking threat across the campaign and was once again to the fore at Feyenoord. Albrighton, meanwhile, remains a creative influence for the Foxes and was one of their brightest sparks in the 1-1 draw against Roma.

Balls recovered

10 Roger Ibañez (Roma)
7 Jonny Evans (Leicester)
7 Chris Smalling (Roma)
7 Ricardo Pereira (Leicester)
6 Tyrell Malacia (Feyenoord)
6 Valentin Rongier (Marseille)

Highlights: Leicester 1-1 Roma
Highlights: Leicester 1-1 Roma

José Mourinho's sides have always had integral centre-backs, and this Roma team are no different; Ibañez and Smalling both continue to excel as part of a three-man defence. Evans, Smalling and Pereira all showed off similar defensive prowess to complement their progressive distribution.

Clearances

12 Chris Smalling (Roma)
6 Marcos Senesi (Feyenoord)
5 Rick Karsdorp (Roma)
5 Luan Peres (Marseille)
5 Roger Ibañez (Roma)

Smalling is out on his own here, epitomising the resilience of a Roma team which allowed Leicester only limited sight on goal – he got a bloodied nose for his efforts, too.

Most saves

5 Ofir Marciano (Feyenoord)
2 Steve Mandanda (Marseille)
1 Kasper Schmeichel (Leicester)
0 Rui Patrício (Roma)

Marciano's five saves, set among the two goals he did concede as well as the three his team registered at the other end, were testament to a helter-skelter game in Rotterdam. Rui Patrício had a far easier time of it against Leicester, beaten only by a Gianluca Mancini own goal.