The draw for the Europa League Round of 32 takes place today in Nyon in Switzerland at noon (UK time). The draw for the following round, the last 16, will also be completed today. Who are the teams that Tottenham could possibly meet in the Round of 32?
As winners of Group K, Spurs are one of the 16 seeded teams in the draw so they will not meet any of the other Europa League group winners or the top four teams who dropped down from the Champions after finishing in 3rd place in their groups. They also know that they will play away in the 1st leg with the 2nd leg at White Hart Lane a week later on 27th February.
16 Unseeded Teams
Of the 16 unseeded teams, Spurs won’t be drawn against either Anzhi who finished second in their group or Swansea, another team from the Premier League.
That leaves 14 teams as possible opponents in the next round, some of whom are old adversaries.
FC Chornomorets Odesa from Ukraine finished second in Group B with 10 points behind Ludogorets Razgrad.
Esbjerg of Denmark finished behind FC Red Bull Salzburg, who like Tottenham won all six matches in their group.
NK Maribor were in the same group as Wigan and it was a win over the English team in the final game which took them from bottom of their group to qualify second behind Rubin Kazan. Spurs met Maribor last season in the group stages, drawing 1 – 1 in Slovenia and had a 3 – 1 win at home with a Jermain Defoe hat-trick.
FC Dnipro of Ukraine had 12 points in Group E and were second to Fiorientina.
Maccabi Tel-Aviv were runners-up to Eintracht Frankfurt in Group F with 11 points.
Dynamo Kiev were runners-up to KRC Gent.
Slovan Liberec from the Czech Republic were second to Sevilla.
Real Betis were runners-up to Lyon.
Lazio were second in Group J to Trabzonspor and were our opponents in last year’s group stage. They topped the group on that occasion but both matches ended scoreless.
PAOK Salonika were our opponents in 2011 in the Europa League group and qualified at Tottenham’s expense that season. The match in Greece finished level as Spurs played a very inexperienced team. PAOK won the match at White Hart Lane after scoring two early goals and held on even though Spurs pulled a goal back and PAOK were reduced to ten men at the end of the first half.
The four teams to drop down from the Champions League are:
Ajax who finished third in their group behind Barcelona and AC Milan. Spurs faced Ajax in the 1981-82 ECWC and having signed Jan Vertonghen and Christian Eriksen from the Dutch club, the two players would probably enjoy a return to their former club.
Juventus were third in the Group with Real Madrid and Galatasaray.
Porto, the club were Andre Villas-Boas started his career in coaching and management and had such a successful initial season, were behind Atletico Madrid and Zenit St, Petersburg. We faced Porto in the 1991-92 ECWC.
Viktoria Plzen of the Czech Republic finished 3rd in the same Group as Bayern Munich and Manchester City
Round of 16:
Dates – 1st leg: 13th March
2nd leg: 20th March