EUROPE: Champions League
Time: 8:00 PM
Venue: Groupama Arena (Budapest)
Trailing 3-2 on aggregate, Ferencváros will need to muster the same character that saw them vanquish a seeded Slavia Prague 2-0 in the home leg of their UEFA Champions League (UCL) third qualifying round tie. A handicap-beating win is their only route to progression in regular time here, and a first-ever set of successive UCL group stage appearances.
That win over Slavia forms part of the Hungarian champions’ strong ten-game home form across all competitions (W8, D1, L1). They averaged a solid 2.75 goals per match across their previous four home wins (GF 11, GA 1), though managed to score inside the opening half-hour just once across those four games.
The first leg of this tie was a true test of character for visiting Young Boys, who firstly had to equalise after conceding in the opening 15 minutes for a third successive UCL game. Less than ten minutes after drawing level, they were reduced to ten men, but even so the Swiss champions still managed to win and rack up a third HT/FT win in four European matches.
Thanks to that result, the Swiss outfit still remain unbeaten in Europe this season (W3, D2), but their away form in this competition remains problematic. They’ve failed to win any of their last four pre-group phase UCL matches on foreign soil (D3, L1), with the sole defeat during that time coming against another team (Midtjylland) that overcame ‘unseeded’ status in the previous round.
Players to watch: Franck Boli’s double during the first leg kept Ferencváros’ hopes of progression alive – all five of his prior UCL goals have been the first or last on the day. Opposing Young Boys striker Meschack Elia responded just two minutes after Boli’s first-leg opener. That goal was his second competitive strike of the season to arrive before the 20th minute.
Ferencvaros’ form in last 5 matches: LWLWL.
Young Boys’ form in last 5 matches: WWWLD.