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Anderlecht vs AZ Alkmaar Europa Conference League quarter-final first leg preview: Where to watch, kick-off time, predicted line-ups

When is it? How can you watch it? What are the possible line-ups? All you need to know about the UEFA Europa Conference League quarter-final first leg between Anderlecht and AZ Alkmaar.

Conference League quarter-finals: Anderlecht vs AZ Alkmaar

Anderlecht and AZ Alkmaar meet in their UEFA Europa Conference League quarter-final first leg on Thursday 13 April.

Anderlecht vs AZ at a glance

When: Thursday 13 April (21:00 CET kick-off)
Where: Anderlecht Stadium, Brussels
What: UEFA Europa Conference League quarter-final first leg
How to follow: Build-up and live coverage can be found here
Winners face Gent or West Ham in the semi-finals, playing the away leg first

Where to watch Anderlecht vs AZ Alkmaar

Fans can find their local UEFA Europa Conference League broadcast partner(s) here.

What do you need to know?

The battle of the giant-killers. Both these sides took notable scalps in the round of 16. Anderlecht belied their domestic travails with a rousing victory over a Villarreal team many were tipping to go all the way in this competition; meanwhile, AZ came from behind home and away to record a pair of 2-1 wins against Serie A high-fliers Lazio. The Dutch club are favourites, but Anderlecht are evidently finding their feet under former Brentford assistant Brian Riemer, who replaced Felice Mazzù in December.

Highlights: Villarreal 0-1 Anderlecht

Predicted line-ups

Anderlecht: Verbruggen; Murillo, Debast, Vertonghen, N'Diaye; Ashimeru, Diawara, Refaelov; Dreyer, Raman, Amuzu
Misses next match if booked: Arnstad, Debast, Delcroix, Murillo, Slimani

AZ Alkmaar: Ryan; Sugawara, Goes, Hatzidiakos, Milos; Reijnders, Clasie; Odgaard, Mijnans, Karlsson; Pavlidis
Misses next match if booked: Bazoer, De Wit, Kerkez

Form guide

Form (all competitions, most recent first): DWWWWD
Where they stand: 9th in Belgian First League

AZ Alkmaar
Form (all competitions, most recent first): LDLWWW 
Where they stand: 4th in Dutch Eredivisie

Highlights: AZ Alkmaar 2-1 Lazio

Expert prediction

Alyssa Saliou, match reporter

Anderlecht had a difficult start to the season, but since the arrival of coach Riemer they have transformed into a team that brings fireworks to the pitch and even worked their way past Villarreal, Europa League winners in 2021, to reach the last eight. Anderlecht seem nothing like the club that briefly flirted with relegation this season, and they have Riemer to thank. The Danish coach was brimming with enthusiasm when he was appointed in December and has transferred that positivity to his players and the fans, all of whom now believe that a UEFA Europa Conference League semi-final berth is within their reach.

View from the camps

Brian Riemer, Anderlecht coach: "My dream for the first leg? Ideally, I would like to win 3-0 or 4-0 and be able to spend a not too stressful afternoon in Alkmaar next Thursday. We won't go crazy, though. Our style remains the one we have been using recently. It is special to be able to say that we are fighting for a place in the semi-final of a European competition. It is an exceptional motivation."

Pascal Jansen, AZ Alkmaar coach: "Anderlecht are and will remain a top club. In Belgium, they have underperformed this season and a lot has happened, including a change of coach. But that means nothing to me. From a European perspective, they are doing fine."

What happens next?

The second leg takes place on 20 April, with the winners advancing to the semi-finals, where they will face the victors of the Gent vs West Ham tie.

The Eden Arena (pictured above) in Prague, Czechia, will host this season's Europa Conference League final on 7 June 2023.

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