UEFA.com works better on other browsers
For the best possible experience, we recommend using Chrome, Firefox or Microsoft Edge.

What to look out for in the UEFA Europa League knockout round play-offs

Feyenoord and Roma renew acquaintances, Galatasaray look for a repeat of 2000 and Qarabağ's dream goes on.

Europa League Ones to Watch: Group stage stars

The UEFA Europa League group runners-up and Champions League third-place sides have discovered their fate for February's knockout round play-offs following December's draw.

In this piece presented by Enterprise Rent-A-Car, we pick out some key talking points ahead of the first legs. Remember: Every mission matters.

Knockout round play-off schedule

Early kick-offs (18:45 CET)

Feyenoord vs Roma
Galatasaray vs Sparta Praha
Shakhtar Donetsk vs Marseille
Young Boys vs Sporting CP

Late kick-offs (21:00 CET)

Benfica vs Toulouse
Milan vs Rennes
Lens vs Freiburg
Braga vs Qarabağ 

Who is through to the last 16?

Atalanta (ITA)
Brighton (ENG)
Leverkusen (GER
Liverpool (ENG)
Rangers (SCO)
Slavia Praha (CZE)
Villarreal (ESP)
West Ham (ENG)

Feyenoord and Roma meet again

Familiar faces will go head-to-head once more when Feyenoord and Roma meet for the third successive season in European competition. Roma memorably won the first ever edition of the UEFA Europa Conference League in 2022 by beating their Dutch opponents 1-0 in Tirana courtesy of a Nicolò Zaniolo goal. They followed that up by triumphing 4-2 on aggregate in the quarter-finals of last season's Europa League in an action-packed and nail-biting tie.

Further excitement will be expected this time around in what will be Roma's first European tie since the departure of coach José Mourinho, and the arrival of Roma midfield great Daniele De Rossi as his replacement. "I never stopped following Roma," said the former captain. "Witnessing the Europa League evenings last year made me realise that something special is being rebuilt in terms of the relationship between the team and the fans."

Quarter-final highlights: Roma 4-1 Feyenoord

Galatasaray summon spirit of 2000

Galatasaray came so close to qualifying for a first Champions League round of 16 since 2013/14 but were beaten in a winner-takes-all encounter with Copenhagen on Matchday 6 to send them into the Europa League instead. Despite that disappointment, the Turkish giants will feel confident that 23 years on from their dramatic penalty shoot-out victory over Arsenal in the final of this competition, they can go all the way again.

Standing in their way are Sparta Praha, who will certainly prove a tough test after they pipped Real Betis to finish runners-up to Rangers in Group C. "We got an attractive opponent," reflected Sparta winger Lukáš Haraslín. "Galatasaray are multiple Turkish champions, so an interesting and challenging match awaits us."

2000 final: Galatasaray vs Arsenal penalty shoot-out

Qarabağ's date with destiny

At the eighth time of trying, Qarabağ managed to clinch a top-two finish in their Europa League group to leave them dreaming of progression through the knockout stages. The Azerbaijani champions performed admirably in Group H, and even came within seconds of earning a point off heavyweights Leverkusen before a last-gasp Victor Boniface winner.

They should be brimming with confidence going into a challenging play-off tie against Braga, and coach Gurban Gurbanov is full of pride over his team's efforts. "A long-awaited success has been achieved," he said. "The arrival of big, good teams to Baku, playing for results in such tournaments can only benefit Azerbaijani football. I am very happy."

Highlights: Qarabağ 2-1 Häcken

Where is the 2024 UEFA Europa League final?

Getty Images

The 2023/24 UEFA Europa League season will conclude at Dublin Arena in the Republic of Ireland on 22 May 2024.

With a capacity in excess of 50,000, Dublin Arena is the home of the Republic of Ireland's national football and Ireland's rugby union team. First opened in 2010, the stadium will be staging its second UEFA Europa League decider, having been the venue for the all-Portuguese final of 2011 between Porto and Braga, when Radamel Falcao scored the only goal as the Dragons took the trophy.