Turkish Süper Lig duo Başakşehir and Konyaspor will look to capitalize on home advantage as they prepare to host respective Europa Conference League second qualifying round games Thursday.
While Başakşehir will host Israel's Maccabi Netanya, Konyaspor will welcome Belarusian representative BATE Borisov.
Başakşehir will look to pick up a win in its first European encounter under coach Emre Belözoğlu. It does not have any major injury concerns but the latest transfer Turkish German star Mesut Özil will not be available for the match.
In its previous 36 games in various European competitions, coached by Abdullah Avcı and Okan Buruk, Başakşehir picked up nine wins, eight draws and suffered 19 losses. In those matches, the Istanbul-based side scored 39 goals while conceding 63.
The match against Maccabi Netanya will also be Başakşehir’s first-ever face-off against a team from Israel.
It will look to take full advantage of playing on home turf, where it secured six of its nine European wins so far, compared to five draws and seven losses. It has scored 20 goals while conceding 21 goals in Istanbul.
Başakşehir competed in European competitions for the first time in the 2015-16 season but crashed out of the UEFA Europa League third qualifying round after losing to the Netherlands' AZ Alkmaar.
Its first European win came in 2017-18 against Belgian representative Club Brugge. After a 3-3 away draw in the UEFA Champions League third qualifying round, it won 2-0 at home.
After winning the Turkish title in the 2019-20 season, it played directly in the Champions League group stages.
It was drawn into a tough group, featuring Paris Saint-Germain, RB Leipzig and Manchester United, losing five out of the six matches while picking up a solitary win over the Red Devils.
After an early exit from the groups, however, it reached the Round of 16 in the Europa League, the club’s best-ever performance in Europe.
The match at Başakşehir Fatih Terim Stadium will kick off at 8:45 p.m. and will be officiated by Georgia’s Irakli Kvirikashvili.
The second leg will be played on July 28 in Israel. The winner of the qualifying round will face the winner of the match between Iceland’s Breidablik and Montenegro’s Buducnost Podgorica in the third qualifying round.
Meanwhile, Konyaspor, who placed third in the 2021-22 Süper Lig season, will welcome Belarus’ BATE Borisov for the first leg of the UEFA European Conference League second qualifying round match.
Portuguese referee Gustavo Fernandes Correia will officiate the match, which will kick off at 10 p.m. local time (7 p.m. GMT), at the Konya Metropolitan Stadium.
This will be Konyaspor’s 13th match in Europe. In the previous matches, it has one win, four draws and seven losses. The team from central Anatolia scored six goals in those matches while conceding 18.
Both legs of the Konyaspor-BATE Borisov match will be held in Turkey due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
The first match will be played without spectators and the rematch will take place on July 28.
The winner of the second qualifying round will take on the winner of the match between Slovenia’s Koper and Liechtenstein’s Vaduz in the third qualifying round.