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Feb 25, 2021 at 8pm UK
B. LeverkusenBayer Leverkusen
Young BoysYoung Boys

Sinkgraven (53')
FT(HT: 0-0)
Jordan Siebatcheu (48'), Fassnacht (86')

Preview: Bayer Leverkusen vs. Young Boys - prediction, team news, lineups

:Headline: Preview: Bayer Leverkusen vs. Young Boys - prediction, team news, lineups:
Sports Mole previews Thursday's Europa League clash between Bayer Leverkusen and Young Boys, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
Sports Mole

Bayer Leverkusen take on Young Boys in the second leg of their last-32 Europa League knockout tie, with the Germans looking to overturn the 4-3 deficit from last week.

Young Boys led 3-0 at half time in a topsy-turvy encounter, with Leverkusen's second half fightback making them the marginal favourites to progress on Thursday.

Match preview

Leverkusen did not look as though they had stepped off the plane during their first half in Switzerland last Thursday, with Christian Fassnacht, Theoson Siebatcheuand and Elia Meschak blitzing Young Boys ahead.

However, while Peter Bosz's side can be suspect defensively, attacking is a great strength of theirs. Ironically, Leverkusen played with reduced pressure and greater freedom when chasing the game, with a Patrik Schick double and Moussa Diaby levelling proceedings before Siebatcheu restored Young Boys' lead with only a minute of normal time remaining.

Perhaps understandably so after an exhausting affair and a quick turnaround, Leverkusen appeared to be running on empty throughout their 1-1 draw at Augsburg on Sunday, with Edmond Tapsoba salvaging a point in injury-time.

However, with the gap to the Champions League qualification positions in the Bundesliga now extended to five points, winning the Europa League may well be their best chance of qualifying for Europe's elite competition next season, making overturning their loss in Switzerland last week all the more important.

Young Boys will certainly take some stopping on Thursday, though, with their 2-0 win over Servette at the weekend extending the Swiss side's winning run to seven matches in all competitions and their lead at the top of the Swiss table to an astonishing 18 points after only 21 matches.

Like Leverkusen, Gerardo Seoane's side are a serious offensive force, as was illustrated by them bagging four against Leverkusen even without their suspended top goalscorer Jean-Pierre Nsame, who was on target once again at the weekend.

Siebatcheuand and Elia stepped up admirably with three goals between them in the first leg, though, so Seoane will be hoping they can fill the void once again on Thursday.

Indeed, with Leverkusen having three away goals to their name, Young Boys will almost certainly need to score at least once to remain in the competition, as keeping a clean sheet against Bosz's side will be extremely difficult.

Bayer Leverkusen Europa League form: LWWWWL
Bayer Leverkusen form (all competitions): LLWDLD

Young Boys Europa League form: DWWLWW
Young Boys form (all competitions): WWWWWW

Team News

Leverkusen will be without the injured Lukas Hradecky, Karim Bellarabi, Julian Baumgartlinger, Mitchell Weiser, Santiago Arias and Paulinho for the visit of Young Boys.

Bosz is likely to side with Schick in attack, with Lucas Alario potentially set to make an impact from the bench.

The Swiss side will travel to Germany without Nsame and Mohamed Camara, who remain suspended after their dismissals in the group stage.

Midfielders Vincent Sierra and Esteban Petignat are still out injured, so Seoane is unlikely to change his starting XI which gained a crucial win last week.

Bayer Leverkusen possible starting lineup:
Lomb; Frimpong, Tah, Tapsoba, Sinkgraven; Wirtz, Aranguiz, Demirbay; Bailey, Schick, Diaby

Young Boys possible starting lineup:
Von Ballmoos; Hefti, Lustenberger, Zesiger, Lefort; Fassnacht, Aebischer, Lauper, Ngamaleu; Elia, Siebatcheu

We say: Bayer Leverkusen 3-1 Young Boys

(6-5 on aggregate)

We can envisage another highly entertaining affair on Thursday, with both sides more at ease attacking than they are defending.

Leverkusen's three away goals could ultimately prove pivotal, as Young Boys will have to open up should they fall behind.

Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting a home win in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Home Win:data

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