Fenerbahçe to face tough opponents in UEFA Europa League

DAILY SABAH
ISTANBUL
Published 26.08.2016 14:35
Updated 26.08.2016 15:27
A general view shows the draw for the 2016/2017 UEFA Europa League soccer competition at Monaco's Grimaldi Forum in Monaco, August 26, 2016. (Reuters Photo)
A general view shows the draw for the 2016/2017 UEFA Europa League soccer competition at Monaco's Grimaldi Forum in Monaco, August 26, 2016. (Reuters Photo)

Manchester United will come up against their former striker Robin van Persie after being placed in the same group as the Dutchman's current club Fenerbahçe in Friday's draw for the group stage of the Europa League.

Istanbul giants Fenerbahçe to face with tough opponents in UEFA Europa League's group stage as Dick Acvocaat's students will play against Manchester United from England, Feyenoord from Netherlands and Zorya Luhansk from Ukraine.

Second in the Turkish league last season to Istanbul rivals Beşiktaş, Fenerbahçe were eliminated from the Champions League by Monaco in the third qualifying round.

They have since sacked coach Vitor Pereira and replaced him with veteran Dutchman Dick Advocaat, whose squad includes Van Persie and ex-Liverpool defender Martin Skrtel.

United can also look forward to coming up against Van Persie's hometown team and first club Feyenoord.

The 1970 European Cup winners and twice winners of the UEFA Cup finished third in the Dutch top flight last season and also won the Dutch Cup.

Now coached by former Arsenal and Barcelona left-back Giovanni van Bronckhorst, the Rotterdam side are captained by Dirk Kuyt, formerly of Liverpool and Fenerbahçe.

United have faced both of these sides in the Champions League in the past, but the Ukrainians are a new proposition as they feature at this stage of European competition for the first time.

Konyaspor, which finished last season at the third place in Turkish Super League, will face Shakhtar Donetsk from Ukraine, Braga from Portugal and Gent from Belgium in Group H.

Ankara club Osmanlıspor, last year's fifth, will play against Villarreal from Spain, Steaua Bucharest from Romania and FC Zurich from Switzerland.

Another Istanbul club, Başakşehir, were eliminated by Shakhtar Donetsk in the play-off round match played on Aug. 5.

Here are all the groups:

Group B: Olympiacos(GRE), APOEL(CYP), Young Boys(SUI), Astana(KAZ)

Group C: Anderlecht(BEL), St-Étienne(FRA), Mainz(GER), Qäbälä(AZE)

Group D: Zenit(RUS), AZ(NED), M. Tel-Aviv(ISR), Dundalk(IRL)

Group E: Plzeň(CZE), Roma(ITA), Austria Wien(AUT), Astra(ROU)

Group F: Athletic(ESP), Genk(BEL), Rapid Wien(AUT), Sassuolo(ITA)

Group G: Ajax(NED), Standard Liège(BEL), Celta(ESP), Panathinaikos(GRE)

Group I: Schalke(GER), Salzburg(AUT), Krasnodar(RUS) Nice(FRA)

Group J: Fiorentina(ITA), PAOK(GRE), Liberec(CZE), Qarabağ(AZE)

Group K: Internazionale(ITA), Sparta Praha(CZE), Southampton(ENG), H. Beer-Sheva(ISR)

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