Red Bull Salzburg will have been the underdogs going into the first leg of their Europa League knockout round play-off against Roma last week, even after dropping down from the Champions League. The Austrian side finishing third in their group behind Chelsea and AC Milan and had only recently returned from their long winter break, playing two matches before hosting the Romans.
But a late goal from Nicolas Capaldo secured a 1-0 win for Salzburg, an advantage they will now be looking to keep hold of. History is on their side too, with Salzburg progressing from five of their last six two-legged knockout ties in major European competitions when winning the first leg.
However, Roma have progressed from three of their last five two-legged knockout ties in major European competition when losing the first leg. Roma missed out on direct passage to the last 16 of the Europa League by finishing second in their group, six points behind Real Betis.
It was an underwhelming group stage for the Italians which saw them open in defeat to Ludogorets, though they beat the Bulgarian side to seal their knockout stage spot. The defeat to Salzburg was also Roma’s third in five matches, though they bounced back to beat Hellas Verona in Serie A at the weekend.
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Roma vs Red Bull Salzburg match stats
Roma will be hoping they can feed off the Stadio Olimpico crowd to mount their comeback on Thursday, and there is good reason for them to be optimistic. The Giallorossi are unbeaten in their last 13 home games in the knockout stages of major European competitions, with 11 wins and just two draws. In the Europa Conference League last season there was one draw and two victories, including a 4-0 win over Bodo/Glimt having lost the first leg of that quarter-final by one goal.
Salzburg outshot Roma in the first leg last week but this time the Austrian side may be tad more conservative should they wish to protect their lead. However, even with more shots, Salzburg won just two corners last week compared to Roma’s six.