The draw for the Europa League Round of 16 has been made, and it’s thrown up some very interesting ties for the three German sides left in the competition. Bayer Leverkusen will face Rangers, Wolfsburg have been drawn against Shakhtar Donetsk and Eintracht Frankfurt will square off against Basel.
Wolfsburg’s draw is perhaps the toughest- Shakhtar have European pedigree, and have often proved tough nuts to crack. On paper, Leverkusen will be relatively satisfied with a draw against Rangers, who are the sole Scottish side left in the competition after Celtic’s exit at the hands of FC Copenhagen.
The games will take place on 12 and 19 March. Wolfsburg are at home for the first leg, while Leverkusen and Frankfurt will both be travelling for their respective first legs.
Germany’s solitary club in Europa League action tonight sealed their passage into the next round with a 2:1 win over their opponents. Eintracht Frankfurt, also last year’s EL semi-finalists, took the tie 4:2 on aggregate against their Estonian opponents.
The first leg in Estonia had produced a record attendance for a club game in that country and the Eintracht fans were in full voice for the second leg, with the 48.000 capacity Commerzbank Arena almost filled to the brim.
Both of Eintracht’s goals came from Goncalo Pacencia (37 and 54 pen), while Sinyavskiy netted in the 40th minute for Flora. Pacencia was therefore the pick of the players in the ratings, as seen below.
Eintracht will take on Liechtenstenian outfit Vaduz in the third round.
Germany’s last remaining representatives in continental competition were eliminated on Thursday night as Eintracht Frankfurt lost on penalties. The visitors, who had been thrashed 6:1 by Leverkusen over the weekend, gave it their all, and were leading 3:2 in the shootout before Martin Hinteregger shot his spot kick straight at Kepa, and the Spaniard’s save changed the complexion of the game. Hazard and David Luiz scored from their penalties, and Goncalo missed his as Frankfurt lost 4:3 in the shootout.
We now have an all-English Europa League final in Baku later this month between Arsenal and Chelsea.