Who could Tottenham face in the next stage of the Conference League?
Tottenham Hotspur succumbed to a 2-1 defeat to NS Mura in the UEFA Conference League last night.
The defeat in Slovenia means Spurs cannot finish on top of their group. Rennes’ 3-3 draw against Vitesse was enough for the French outfit to qualify for the knockout stages of the competition.
Tottenham’s hopes of staying in the league depend on the final matchday of the group stages. Antonio Conte’s men face Rennes and all they have to do is match Vitesse’s result against Mura.
If Spurs can do that, they will qualify for the knockout round play-offs, which will take place in February.
Who could Tottenham face in the next round of the Conference League?
If Spurs finish second in Group G, they will qualify for the knockout round play-offs where they will face one of the sides that will finish third in their Europa League groups.
Not all groups in Europe’s second-tier competition have been finalised just yet. We’ll have to wait for the results from matchday six to know for sure, but here are the teams who could potentially drop down to the Conference League.
From Group A, either Sparta Prague or Brondby will drop down to the Conference League, while from Group B, it could either be PSV Eindhoven or Real Sociedad.
Group C is a lot more open as any of Leicester City, Napoli, Spartak Moscow or Legia Warsaw could drop down. As the Foxes hail from the same country as Tottenham, they will not be allowed to face each other in the play-offs.
Fenerbahce will be the team coming down to the Conference League from Group D, while either Marseille or Lokomotiv Moscow could join the Turks from Group E depending on the result on the final day of the group stages.
Group F is similar to C as three teams – Red Star, Braga or Midtjylland – could drop down. Group G, however, is settled already, and Scottish giants Celtic will be the ones trying their luck out in the Conference League.
Teams Spurs would want to avoid
Conte will back his Spurs side to beat every one of the above teams, but two-legged ties are always tricky. Anything could happen in such ties, which is not ideal at all for Tottenham.
PSV and Real Sociedad are quality sides on their day and are more than capable of grinding out a result over two legs. Napoli and Fenerbahce are tricky sides to face as well, especially away from home.
The one side Spurs would prefer to stay away from is Marseille.
Even fans of Les Phoceens don’t really know which Marseille side will turn up. If the best version of Jorge Sampaoli’s team shows up, they’d fancy themselves to beat any other side in the competition, including Tottenham.
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