Europa League Conference: Feyenoord v Union Berlin Match Preview
Feyenoord is looking to strengthen his position at the top of his Europa League Conference group when he hosts German team Union Berlin on Thursday. Kick-off at De Kuip is at 5.45 p.m. BST.
Feyenoord made a strong group start with a 0-0 draw at Maccabi Haifa followed by a 2-1 win over Slavia Prague in Rotterdam.
Arne Slot’s side are one point ahead of the group and they will look to take a big step towards the round of 16 when they host Union Berlin.
The Bundesliga side are seen as Feyenoord’s closest challenger, but they started their campaign with a 3-1 loss to Slavia Prague before defeating Maccabi Haifa 3-0.
Feyenoord had a rough patch in the league with a loss to Vitesse followed by a poor 2-2 home draw against RKC Waalwijk this weekend. The point leaves Feyenoord fifth in the table and six points behind Ajax.
Union Berlin are currently fifth in the Bundesliga table and beat Wolfsburg 2-0 this weekend.
Feyenoord is without Mark Diemers, Francesco Antonucci and Aliou Balde due to injury, but Riess Nelson made his debut for the club this weekend and he could feature again.
Possible composition of Feyenoord: Bijlow, Pedersen, Malacia, Treuner, Senesi, Kokcu, Toornstra, Til, Linssen, Jahanbakhsh, Sinisterra
Former ADO star Sheraldo Becker and loaned PSV Eindhoven defender Timo Baumgartl are part of the Union Berlin squad and could feature. Pawel Wszolek is the only injury issue for the Bundesliga team.
The composition of Union Berlin: Luthe, Friedrich, Knocke, Jaeckel, Giesselmann, Ryerson, Haraguchi, Khedira, Promel, Kruse, Awoniyi
Feyenoord 23/20 Draw 5/2 Union Berlin 11/5
Feyenoord needs a great performance
Feyenoord’s last two performances have been a worry for Slot ahead of what is going to be a very difficult game against a good Bundesliga side.
Awoniyi and Kruse are great attackers and they will punish Feyenoord if they are not turned on throughout the game. However, Feyenoord can rejoice in Ajax’s pounding of Dortmund and the home crowd will create a great atmosphere for the players.
A solid defensive performance is needed and players like Sinisterra and Til will need to be fit on the other end. A win would put Feyenoord in an excellent position.