UEFA Youth League Preview: Red Bull Salzburg U19 Face Olympique Lyon U19 in Quarter-finals

The UEFA Youth League returned to action at the weekend following the competition’s suspension in March due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and the remainder of it will take place at the Centre Sportif de Colovray in Nyon, Switzerland. Red Bull Salzburg are aiming to raise the arched piece of silverware for the second time in four years but the first obstacle to overcome is Olympique Lyon.

Red Bull Salzburg come into this competition full of confidence and in great form after the squad helped Liefering finish third in the 2. Liga with a strong run of form dating back to late November. Since the league’s return in June, the team won eight and lost once in 11 matches, scoring 35 goals (3.18 per match) without star man, Karim Adeyemi, who had scored nine and assisted eight in 14 2. Liga matches before being promoted to the first team.

There will be a notable absentee from Salzburg’s dugout as Frank Kramer vacated his positions as academy director and Youth League coach in July due differences in future planning and has been replaced by Liefering head coach, Bo Svensson, and Under-18s head coach, Matthias Jaissle, as co-coaches for the competition. The duo will be without Luis Phelipe (Red Bull Bragantino) and Tobias Anselm (expired contract) who have left the club.

Due to the pandemic and the French President Emmanuel Macron’s decision to prematurely end the 2019/20 season, Lyon haven’t played a competitive match since overcoming Atalanta in the round of 16 on penalties in March. The French team will be without top scorer, Rayan Cherki, who is with the first team squad as they prepare for their Champions League semi-final versus Bayern Munich.

On the other hand, Luka Sučić, Peter Pokorný, Amar Dedić, Junior Adamu, and Nicolas Seiwald will be available for selection after gaining valuable first team exposure during the team’s training camp in Bramberg am Wildkogel during the off-season and will likely play important roles in the Youth League. Despite becoming a part of Jesse Marsch’s squad, Adeyemi will return to lead the line for the Under-19s and potentially add to his seven goal contributions in as many matches.

In preparation for the tournament, Svensson and Jaissle’s side faced a first team XI comprising of squad players in a friendly and defeated them convincingly 6-2 on Friday. There was no mention of scorers nor line-ups but this result will no doubt boost their confidence ahead of the upcoming match. Should the team progress, either Inter Milan or Real Madrid await in the semi-finals.

Match Information

Date: Wednesday, August 19, 2020

Kick-off: 15:00 (CEST) | 09:00 (EST)

Venue: Centre Sportif de Colovray (capacity: 7,200)

Referee: Donatas Rumšas (Lithuania)

Broadcasting: BT Sport 2 (United Kingdom)

Youth League Form

Red Bull Salzburg U19

Napoli U19 1-5 (A) | Genk U19 0-2 (A) | Liverpool U19 2-3 (H) | Porto U19 1-1 (5-6 pens.) (A) | Derby County U19 4-1 (H)

Olympique Lyon U19

Benfica U19 2-3 (H) | Zenit St. Petersburg U19 3-1 (A) | RB Leipzig U19 1-0 (H) | Real Zaragoza U19 1-3 (A) | Atalanta U19 3-3 (0-2 pens.) (A)

Team News

Red Bull Salzburg U19

Injured: Wallison (knee), Csaba Bukta (shoulder)

Olympique Lyon U19

Absent: Rayan Cherki (first team),

Suspended: Arthur Pontet

Predicted Line-ups

Red Bull Salzburg U19

Antosch – Dedić, Affengruber, Okoh, Gazibegović – Sučić, Seiwald, Prass – Kjaergaard – Adamu, Adeyemi. (4-3-1-2)

Olympique Lyon U19

Ousmane – Gusto, Diomande, Lukeba – Altikulac, Benaissa, Da Silva, Bard – Wissa, Coly, Barcola. (3-4-3)

Pre-match Quotes

“We are all looking forward to the game on Wednesday. It will not be easy but we are prepared for the game and we will give everything to win the title.”

Exclusive: Junior Adamu on how the squad is feeling ahead of the UEFA Youth League’s return.

“The preparation with our new head coaches was very good. It was a shock for us but therefore nothing has changed. We will continue to play where we stopped.”

Exclusive: Junior Adamu on Frank Kramer’s departure and the preparation under Bo Svensson and Matthias Jaissle.

Score Prediction

Red Bull Salzburg U19 2-0 Olympique Lyon U19

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