The UEFA Champions League qualifying phase is a constant source of stress for many supporters all across the continent with the majority not knowing whether their side is coming or going. The competitive nature of trying to reach the group stage intensifies with each and every passing year, and in this particular tie, PSV Eindhoven and Galatasaray both had high expectations for what they would accomplish.
PSV were the ones who raced into an emphatic 5-1 lead to kickstart the first leg, and then in the second last night, the Dutch side once again overcame Turkish pressure to win once again – booking their place in the next round in the process.
Even when going down to ten men, Eindhoven still tried to seek out goals and went after the win on the night – which says something given the fact they were 5-1 up from the first leg. They already knew they were pretty much guaranteed a place in the next round but they went out there to make a statement. Between some of their rising prospects and veteran stars we think there’s a real chance they could give Ajax a run for their money both domestically and in Europe.
It wasn’t so long ago that Turkey was viewed as real force of nature in world football and especially in Europe, but between their Euros disappointment and Galatasaray/Fenerbahce faltering in European competition, it’s hard to pretend like there isn’t some form of decline going on here. They need to re-insert themselves into the equation but it’s going to take a good few transfer windows in order to do so, which could leave them in something of a flux.
The next round should be viewed as a favourable one for PSV Eindhoven as they prepare to take on Danish side Midtjylland. While Midtjylland have proven themselves to be more than capable of putting in a good shift in Europe over the course of the last few years, something tells us that they’re going to falter against the weight of a team like PSV. The Dutch giants seem to have far more of an attacking presence and they’ve got the experience to go along with it too, which is always going to be a lethal combination.
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