Europa League: Bayer coach Alonso: “We want more this time”

Bundesliga table leaders Bayer Leverkusen are also heading into the knockout rounds in the Europa League with the highest goals.

Europa League: Bayer coach Alonso: “We want more this time”

Bundesliga table leaders Bayer Leverkusen are also heading into the knockout rounds in the Europa League with the highest goals. "It was nice to be in the semi-finals last year. But this year we want a little more," said football teacher Xabi Alonso before departure for the first leg of the round of 16 of the Europa League at Karabakh Agdam on Thursday (6.45 p.m./RTL).

National player Robert Andrich is also highly motivated. "We know what kind of crackers are still in there. These are all teams that normally play in the Champions League," he said. "But we want to seize the opportunity and not make ourselves smaller than we are."

As in the preliminary round, Matej Kovar will be in goal instead of captain Lukas Hradecky in both games against the team from Azerbaijan. World champion Exequiel Palacios could move into the starting lineup after coming on as a substitute in the 2-0 derby win in Cologne. Otherwise, Alonso did not indicate how much he would rotate. "We have the opportunity to do that," he said: "Because we have a lot of good players. In the end, we want to be competitive in all three competitions."

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