Leverkusen's tie with Porto hangs in the balance as the German club travel to Portugal defending a 2-1 lead.
The UEFA Europa League round of 32 tie between UEFA Champions League regulars Porto and Bayer Leverkusen hangs in the balance after a first leg at the BayArena in which the German side claimed a 2-1 win.
• Porto topped UEFA Europa League Group G in the autumn, victories in their last two fixtures lifting them to the summit of a tough section featuring Rangers, Young Boys and Feyenoord. Leverkusen, meanwhile, entered this competition in the knockout phase after crossing over from the UEFA Champions League, where they finished third in Group D behind Juventus and Atlético Madrid on six points.
• Leverkusen looked to have taken command of the first leg just before the hour when a twice-taken penalty by Kai Havertz doubled the lead given to them by Lucas Alario's first-half strike, but a close-range reply from Luis Díaz – the Colombian's third goal of the competition – put Porto right back into the tie.
• Porto's two previous UEFA Europa League pairings with German clubs both came in the round of 32. The first, in 2013/14, proved successful as they knocked out Eintracht Frankfurt on away goals (2-2 h, 3-3 a); the second, in 2015/16, brought elimination against Borussia Dortmund (0-2 a, 0-1 h).
• Leverkusen's only two previous UEFA Europa League meetings with Portuguese teams also came in the round of 32, the first in 2012/13 against Benfica bringing defeat (0-1 h, 1-2 a), the second in 2015/16 against Sporting CP producing a comprehensive victory (1-0 a, 3-1 h).
• Porto have won ten of their 17 home games in UEFA competition against German visitors, including 3-1 victories in each of the two most recent – UEFA Champions League group stage encounters with Leipzig in 2017/18 and Schalke in 2018/19. The Dragons have won just two of their 12 two-legged knockout ties against German teams, though they did defeat Bayern München 2-1 in the 1987 European Champion Clubs' Cup final in Vienna.
• Leverkusen's record in Portugal is W2 D3 L3, all but one of those eight matches having taken place in Lisbon. The two wins were both against Sporting.
• Domestic runners-up in league and cup last season – to Benfica and Sporting respectively – Porto also reached the quarter-finals of the UEFA Champions League, where they were beaten by eventual winners Liverpool (0-2 a, 1-4 h).
• The Dragons' bid to return to the UEFA Champions League group stage this term – for a record-equalling 24th time – ended in the third qualifying round when they lost on away goals to Krasnodar (1-0 a, 2-3 h). That defeat despatched them directly into the UEFA Europa League group stage, where they had competed just once before – in 2010/11, when they won the trophy – and they survived 0-2 defeats at both Feyenoord and Rangers to finish top of the section with ten points thanks to wins in each of their final two fixtures, 2-1 at Young Boys and 3-2 at home to Feyenoord.
• Since that 2010/11 triumph Porto have played 11 matches in the UEFA Europa League knockout phase, winning just two (D3 L6). Their record in round of 32 ties is W2 L2, with victory in the first (2-1 a, 0-1 h v Sevilla in 2010/11), defeat in the second (1-2 h, 0-4 a v Manchester City in 2011/12), victory in the third (v Frankfurt in 2013/14), and defeat in the fourth (v Dortmund in 2015/16).
• Porto's home record in the UEFA Europa League, including qualifying, is W10 D3 L3, but they have yet to win at the Estádio do Dragão in the round of 32, all three of those defeats having occurred at this stage of the competition.
• Porto have won only five of the 22 UEFA competition ties in which they lost the away first leg, most recently going down to Liverpool in last season's UEFA Champions League quarter-final. However, four of those five victories have come when the away first leg ended in a 2-1 defeat, including last season against Roma in the UEFA Champions League round of 16 when they won the second leg 3-1 after extra time.
• Fourth in last season's Bundesliga, Leverkusen thus entered the UEFA Champions League group stage for the 12th time. In Europe they were eliminated from the UEFA Europa League round of 32 on away goals by Krasnodar (0-0 a, 1-1 h) after topping a group featuring Ludogorets, FC Zürich and AEK Larnaca.
• The German club's bid to reach the UEFA Champions League round of 16 was scuppered by defeats in their opening three matches – 1-2 at home to Lokomotiv Moskva, 0-3 at Juventus and 0-1 at Atlético Madrid – and although they rallied to beat Lokomotiv away (2-0) and Atlético at home (2-1), a home defeat by Juve on Matchday 6 (0-2) left them in third place.
•.Leverkusen's record in four previous UEFA Europa League round of 32 ties is identical to that of Porto. They won the first, against Metalist Kharkiv in 2010/11 (4-0 a, 2-0 h), lost the second, against Benfica in 2012/13, won the third, against Sporting in 2015/16, and lost the fourth, last season against Krasnodar (0-0 a, 1-1 h). Their away record in this round is W2 D1 L1.
• Despite those autumn defeats in Turin and Madrid, Leverkusen have lost only three of their last 11 European away fixtures (W4 D4). Their record on the road in the UEFA Europa League knockout phase is W2 D1 L3.
• Leverkusen have an excellent record in UEFA ties when they have won the home leg, winning 11 out of 12. However, the one defeat came in the most recent, in the 2014/15 UEFA Champions League against Atlético Madrid, when they were eliminated on penalties after both matches ended in 1-0 home wins. They have never previously won the first leg at home by a 2-1 scoreline but have progressed on five occasions out of six when travelling to the second leg with a one-goal lead.
UEFA Europa League squad changes
In: Vítor Ferreira*
Out: Bruno Costa (Portimonense)
In: Ayman Azhil, Exequiel Palacios (River Plate), Edmond Tapsoba (Vitória SC)
Out: Joel Pohjanpalo (Hamburg, loan), Panagiotis Retsos (Sheffield United, loan)
Links and trivia
• Leverkusen's new signing Edmond Tapsoba joined in January from Vitória SC, having played five times for the Guimaraes club in this season's UEFA Europa League group stage. His last goal for Vitória was a penalty against Porto in the semi-final of the Portuguese League Cup on 22 January (1-2). He was also sent off in the first minute of Vitória's 3-0 Liga defeat at the Estádio do Dragão on 1 September 2019.
• Leverkusen's Sven Bender was a member of the Dortmund side that knocked Porto out of the 2015/16 UEFA Europa League round of 32. Karim Bellarabi scored three of the four goals with which Leverkusen eliminated Sporting in the same round of the competition.
• Wendell (Leverkusen) and Alex Telles (Porto) were team-mates at Brazilian club Grêmio, while Charles Aránguiz (Leverkusen) and Otávio (Porto) also played together in Porto Alegre at Grêmio's arch rivals Internacional.
• Leverkusen striker Alario and Porto goalkeeper Agustín Marchesín are fellow Argentinian internationals. Leverkusen's Havertz scored his first senior goal for Germany past Marchesín in a 2-2 friendly draw in Dortmund on 9 October 2019.
• Porto are one of three clubs to have won the UEFA Europa League on their debut appearance, the others being Atlético Madrid in the inaugural 2009/10 competition and Chelsea in 2012/13. They are also one of three former UEFA Europa League winners in this season's knockout phase, along with Sevilla and Manchester United.
• Both clubs are in fine domestic form in 2020. While Porto have won seven of their eight Liga fixtures this year, Leverkusen have claimed five wins in their six Bundesliga matches.
• Porto's record in three UEFA penalty shoot-outs is W1 L2:
3-5 v Sampdoria, 1994/95 UEFA Cup Winners' Cup quarter-final
8-7 v Once Caldas, 2004 European/South American Cup
1-4 v Schalke, 2007/08 UEFA Champions League round of 16
• Leverkusen's record in three UEFA penalty shoot-outs is W1 L2:
3-2 v Espanyol, 1987/88 UEFA Cup final
3-5 v Tirol Innsbruck, 1995 UEFA Intertoto Cup quarter-final
2-3 v Atlético Madrid, 2014/15 UEFA Champions League round of 16
• A Portuguese international winger of some repute who scored 12 goals in 56 appearances for his country including a memorable hat-trick against holders Germany in a 3-0 win at UEFA EURO 2000, Sérgio Conceição played for a variety of clubs, winning Serie A with Lazio and three Portuguese Liga titles in two spells with Porto, where he was appointed as head coach in June 2017, replacing Nuno Espírito Santo following a promising stint in France with Nantes. He led Porto to another league title in 2017/18 and the UEFA Champions League quarter-finals the following season.
• A Dutch champion and three-time domestic cup winner with Feyenoord in the 1990s, Peter Bosz's eventful coaching career, which began in earnest at De Graafschap in 2002, peaked when he led Ajax to the final of the 2016/17 UEFA Europa League. The former Oranje midfielder spent just that one season in Amsterdam, subsequently replacing Thomas Tuchel at Borussia Dortmund, where his reign lasted only six months. After a year's absence he returned to the Bundesliga to coach Bayer Leverkusen in December 2018 and succeeded in qualifying the Werkself for the UEFA Champions League.