Wednesday, May 31, 2023

Prediction: Roma vs Bayer Leverkusen

Verdict: Bayer Leverkusen double chance

Best Odds: 8/11

Bookmaker: Unibet

Looking to spring a Europa League upset at the Stadio Olimpico on Thursday night, Bayer Leverkusen will make the trip to Roma when both sides open their Europa League semi-final adventure.


Starting with the hosts, while Roma might have returned from March’s international break with their sights set on punching a lucrative top-four finish in Serie A, Jose Mourinho’s side have come crashing back down to earth in a worrying fashion. Last seen over the weekend putting in another downbeat display as they slumped to a 2-0 loss at home against Inter Milan, the former Manchester United boss does find some growing pressure on his shoulders. With their recent wobble highlighted by a 3-1 defeat away at Atalanta on April 24th, Roma have also recorded just a single win within 90 minutes from their last seven attempts. With that rut stemming all the way back to April 8th, Mourinho’s side will have plenty of pressure on their shoulders here. Gaining a recent reputation for their defensive issues, the Giallorossi will know that they face another tough test at the Stadio Olimpico on Thursday night.

Team News

After serving a one-match domestic suspension against Roma over the weekend, Zeki Celik should make a full return on Thursday night. However, still dealing with long-term knee issues, the duo of Rick Karsdorp and Marash Kumbulla will once again miss out here.

Having to settle for a spot on the bench last time out, England international Tammy Abraham will be hoping to make a full recall at the Stadio Olimpico. Likewise, despite not featuring in Roma’s last four appearances, ex-Liverpool ace Georginio Wijnaldum could Mady Camara in midfield.

Bayer Leverkusen

As for the visitors, while Bayer Leverkusen might have seen their stunning unbeaten run come to an abrupt end last week, Xabi Alonso’s side have continued to gain a string of plaudits this season. Despite eventually being hit with a 2-1 loss at home against Koln last time out, that is the only defeat Die Werkself have suffered in their last 15 appearances across all competitions – a run that stems all the way back to February 19th. Extending on their Europa League adventure thanks to a routine 5-2 aggregate romp against Royale Union, the ex-Real Madrid midfielder will be confident of making a major European statement on Thursday night. Heading into March’s international break with a 2-1 victory against reigning Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich, Alonso’s side have impressed on their travels this season. In fact, Bayer Leverkusen are unbeaten in each of their last nine contests away from the BayArena.

Team News

Still dealing with a long-term groin injury and yet to make a single appearance since the start of March, attacking talisman Patrik Schick will once again miss out on Thursday night. Likewise, 31-year-old Andrey Lunev remains on the sidelines with a back issue.

Although Florian Wirtz might have failed to find the net in any of his last four appearances, the 20-year-old has notched three Europa League strikes this season and will have a key role to play at the Stadio Olimpico. Manchester United target Jeremy Frimpong will once again start at right wing-back.

Key Factors to Consider

    • When the two sides last met back in 2015, Roma picked up a 3-2 Champions League victory at the Stadio Olimpico.
    • Each of the last four meetings between Thursday’s opponents have finished with both teams finding the net.
    • However, suffering a 2-0 loss against Inter Milan over the weekend, Mourinho’s men have failed to win any of their last four appearances.
    • Bayer Leverkusen have suffered just a single defeat from any of their last 15 appearances across all competitions.
    • Likewise, Die Werkself are unbeaten in each of their previous nine matchups away from the BayArena – a run that stems back to February 3rd.


    While Real Sociedad might have watched their remarkable unbeaten flurry come to an end last weekend, Thursday’s guests will be glad to turn their attention back to Europa League duties here. Suffering just a single loss from any of their last 15 straight appearances across all competitions, Alonso’s side will be looking to cash in on a Roma squad who are enduring another extended wobble. Suffering a 2-0 defeat at home against Inter Milan a few days ago, the Italian icons have recorded just a single win within 90 minutes from their last seven attempts. Although Sociedad might be seen as a real underdog contender at the Stadio Olimpico, we are backing an away double chance here.

    Verdict: Bayer Leverkusen double chance

    Best Odds: 8/11

    Bookmaker: Unibet


    Tom Dunstan

    Formerly of The Independent, Tom has spent the past six years as one of our senior writers and betting experts. Alongside working with numerous publications from across the globe, Tom also graduated from the University of Falmouth in 2014 with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Digital Media.
    Spending almost the past decade working in countries such as Australia, New Zealand and Canada, he has also spent time featuring in sports radio. Tom can be followed on Instagram - @iamtomdunstan



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