Bayer Leverkusen have waited 21 years to play in a European semi-final again and on Thursday evening they face AS Roma at the Stadio Olimpico as they look to secure a place in this season’s UEFA Europa League final.
This represents an excellent chance for Bayer Leverkusen to turn their campaign around after a poor start under Gerardo Seoane which resulted in the appointment of Xabi Alonso. Under the Spaniard, Die Werkself have lost just one of their last 15 games across all competitions.
Coming into this fixture, all players excluding reserve goalkeeper Andrey Lunev and Patrik Schick – who is out for the remainder of the season – trained, and so Alonso has a full strength squad at his disposal.
Odilon Kossounou and Exequiel Palacios were both rested against Cologne and so we can expect the duo to start in place of Mitchel Bakker and Nadiem Amiri with Alonso likely fielding the same frontline in the form of Moussa Diaby, Florian Wirtz and Amine Adli.
Adli scored at the weekend, Wirtz is enjoying some of his best football since returning from an ACL injury and Diaby has been involved in 25 goals (14 goals, 11 assists) this season.
Predicted Bayer Leverkusen vs AS Roma
Lukas Hradecky – Odilon Kossounou, Jonathan Tah, Edmond Tapsoba – Jeremie Frimpong, Robert Andrich, Exequiel Palacios, Piero Hincapie – Moussa Diaby, Florian Wirtz, Amine Adli.
GGFN | Daniel Pinder