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Europa Conference League | Last 16 | 1st Leg
Mar 10, 2022 at 8pm UK
Philips Stadion
FC Copenhagen

4 - 4

Gakpo (21', 70'), Doan (50'), Zahavi (85')
Teze (75'), Gutierrez (90+3')
FT(HT: 1-3)
Bergmann Johannesson (6'), Biel (23', 78'), Lerager (43')
Kristansen (49'), Hojlund (87')

Preview: PSV Eindhoven vs. Copenhagen - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Thursday's Europa Conference League clash between PSV Eindhoven and Copenhagen, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

PSV Eindhoven will welcome Copenhagen to the Netherlands on Thursday for the first leg of their Europa Conference League round-of-16 tie.

The visitors earned automatic progression to this stage thanks to their performance in the group stage, while the Dutch outfit had to get past Maccabi Tel Aviv in a playoff match.

Match preview

PSV Eindhoven's Cody Gakpo celebrates scoring their first goal with teammates on February 17, 2022© Reuters

PSV Eindhoven began their continental journey this year in qualification for the Champions League, and, after two-legged wins over Galatasaray and Midtjylland, they were eventually narrowly beaten by Benfica, dropping into the Europa League group stage as a result.

A pair of victories over Sturm Graz were not enough to see them reach the knockout stages of Europe's secondary competition either, as Roger Schmidt's side finished third behind Monaco and Real Sociedad.

That meant they had to take on Israeli outfit Maccabi Tel Aviv in their final chance at continental knockout football this season, and, after a 1-0 home win thanks to Cody Gakpo's goal, Yorbe Vertessen found the net in the second leg to ensure they progressed with a 2-1 aggregate victory.

The Boeren head into the round of 16 in fine form, having won their last seven games to move within a point of Eredivisie leaders Ajax, most recently defeating Heracles 3-1 at the weekend thanks to goals from Joey Veerman, Eran Zahavi and Gakpo.

Schmidt's men will now look to carry their form into Thursday as they aim to take a lead in Eindhoven before travelling to Denmark for the second leg next week.

FC Copenhagen's Kevin Diks celebrates scoring their first goal with teammates on September 30, 2021© Reuters

They welcome a Copenhagen side looking to extend their stay in the Conference League after progressing through the group stage in dominant fashion.

Following opening wins over Slovan Bratislava and Lincoln Red Imps, the Byens Hold suffered a defeat to main challengers PAOK, but they regained a lead at the top of the group by returning the favour with a 2-1 victory in Greece thanks to goals from Ankersen and Pep Biel.

Jess Thorup's side then ensured they held onto top spot by completing doubles over the group's strugglers, finishing with an eye-catching record of 15 points and 15 goals as a result.

They will also head into Thursday's tie with confidence from their form on the domestic front, as Thorup's men currently sit three points clear at the top of the Danish Superliga thanks to four straight wins, most recently thrashing Randers 3-0 with Roony Bardghji, Peter Ankersen and Lukas Lerager on the scoresheet.

The Byens Hold will now turn their attention back to continental action as they look to gain an advantage in the tie before a home match next Thursday.

PSV Eindhoven Europa Conference League form:
  • W
  • D

PSV Eindhoven form (all competitions):
  • W
  • W
  • D
  • W
  • W
  • W

Copenhagen Europa Conference League form:
  • W
  • W
  • L
  • W
  • W
  • W

Copenhagen form (all competitions):
  • W
  • L
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • W

Team News

PSV Eindhoven's Bruma celebrates scoring their first goal against FC Midtjylland on August 10, 2021© Reuters

PSV Eindhoven will remain without Maximiliano Romero and Andre Ramalho due to injuries, while midfielder Ryan Thomas continued to miss out at the weekend and is not expected to return imminently.

Schmidt deployed a relatively full-strength side for their playoff tie, and the Boeren should do the same on Thursday with Mario Gotze and Eran Zahavi set to play key roles in the attacking line.

Despite neither featuring in the second leg, key wingers Cody Gakpo and Ritsu Doan could feature on the flanks in a 4-2-3-1 system from the outset, with Erick Gutierrez and Ibrahim Sangare likely operating at the base of midfield.

Copenhagen will be missing new striker Khouma Babacar, who is ruled out of both legs of the round-of-16 tie.

Meanwhile, key forward Jonas Wind departed for Wolfsburg in the January transfer window after hitting 11 goals in the first half of the season.

As a result, plenty of attacking responsibility could fall on midfielder Pep Biel, who has provided five goals and five assists in 12 continental games this season.

PSV Eindhoven possible starting lineup:
Drommel; Mwene, Teze, Max, Junior; Gutierrez, Sangare; Gakpo, Gotze, Doan; Zahavi

Copenhagen possible starting lineup:
Grabara; Ankersen, Vavero, Boilesen, Kristiansen; Falk, Stage; Bardghji, Biel, Mukairu; Karamoko

SM words green background

We say: PSV Eindhoven 3-1 Copenhagen

PSV Eindhoven boast the stronger squad on paper, and, while the visitors will certainly pose a difficult test, we back Schmidt's side to pick up a first-leg victory on home turf.

This could be a free-flowing encounter with two exciting sides squaring off, and the visitors will likely be left open if they come out as positively as usual in the Netherlands.

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Data Analysis

Our analysis of all available data, including recent performances and player stats up until an hour before kickoff, suggested the most likely outcome of this match was a PSV Eindhoven win with a probability of 52.7%. A win for Copenhagen had a probability of 26.58% and a draw had a probability of 20.7%.

The most likely scoreline for a PSV Eindhoven win was 2-1 with a probability of 9.04%. The next most likely scorelines for that outcome were 3-1 (6.48%) and 2-0 (6.06%). The likeliest Copenhagen win was 1-2 (6.27%), while for a drawn scoreline it was 1-1 (8.41%). The actual scoreline of 4-4 was predicted with a 0.5% likelihood.

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Game History

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Group A

QSlovan Bratislava631210

Group B

QM. Tel Aviv650115

Group C

QDinamo Zagreb63039
4KF Ballkani61144

Group D


Group E

QAston Villa641113
4Zrinjski Mostar61144

Group F


Group G

4HJK Helsinki60242

Group H

4Spartak Trnava60151

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