On April 13, FC Basel 1893 and OGC Nice will square off in a highly anticipated Europa League quarter-final match. This encounter promises to be an exciting and tense affair, as both teams look to book their place in the semi-finals of Europe’s second-tier club competition.
FC Basel 1893 are no strangers to success in European competitions, having reached the semi-finals of the Europa League twice in the past decade. Their road to the quarter-finals this season has been a bumpy one, with mixed results in the group stages followed by a narrow win over Apollon Limassol in the Round of 32. However, they showed their class in the Round of 16 by defeating Eintracht Frankfurt 4-0 on aggregate, with a dominant performance in the second leg.
OGC Nice, on the other hand, have been something of a surprise package in this season’s Europa League. They finished second in their group behind Bayer Leverkusen, but then produced a stunning performance to knock out Ajax Amsterdam in the Round of 32. They followed that up with an impressive win over Dinamo Zagreb in the Round of 16, with Kasper Dolberg scoring a hat-trick in the second leg.
Both teams have been in decent form in their respective domestic leagues, with FC Basel 1893 currently second in the Swiss Super League and OGC Nice sitting in eighth place in Ligue 1. However, this match will be a different proposition altogether, with both teams knowing that a win would take them one step closer to a place in the Europa League final.
One key factor in this match could be the home advantage for FC Basel 1893. While playing in an empty stadium due to COVID-19 restrictions, they will still have the comfort of playing on their home turf, which could give them an edge over OGC Nice. However, Nice have shown that they can perform well away from home, as evidenced by their win over Ajax in Amsterdam.
Another key factor will be the battle between the two teams’ strikers. FC Basel 1893’s Arthur Cabral has been in excellent form this season, scoring 16 goals in 25 appearances in all competitions. He will be up against OGC Nice’s Kasper Dolberg, who has also been in red-hot form with 15 goals in 25 appearances. The winner of this battle could go a long way in determining the outcome of the match.
Defensively, both teams have been solid this season. FC Basel 1893 have conceded just 26 goals in 28 league matches, while OGC Nice have let in 34 goals in 31 league matches. However, FC Basel 1893 will be without their star defender, Eray Cümart, who is suspended for this match.
In terms of tactics, both teams are likely to play an attacking style of football. FC Basel 1893’s head coach, Ciriaco Sforza, likes his team to press high up the pitch and create chances with quick transitions. OGC Nice’s head coach, Adrian Ursea, has employed a similar approach, with his team looking to play fast, attacking football.
Overall, this promises to be an intriguing and closely contested match between two talented teams. FC Basel 1893 will be looking to make the most of their home advantage, while OGC Nice will be hoping to continue their impressive run in this season’s Europa League. Whoever comes out on top in this clash of the titans
Will have a great chance to progress to the semi-finals, where they will face the winner of the tie between Ajax and Roma.
FC Basel 1893 will be boosted by the return of midfielder Taulant Xhaka, who missed the second leg against Eintracht Frankfurt due to suspension. Xhaka has been a key player for FC Basel 1893 this season, providing energy and creativity in midfield, and his presence will be vital against OGC Nice.
Another player to watch for FC Basel 1893 is winger Valentin Stocker, who has been in excellent form in recent weeks. Stocker scored a crucial goal in the second leg against Eintracht Frankfurt and has been a constant threat down the left flank. He will be looking to continue his impressive form against OGC Nice.
OGC Nice will be without midfielder Pierre Lees-Melou, who is suspended for this match. Lees-Melou has been an important player for OGC Nice this season, providing energy and drive in midfield. His absence will be felt by the French side, but they still have plenty of quality in their squad.
One player who will be looking to make an impact for OGC Nice is attacking midfielder Amine Gouiri. Gouiri has been in fine form this season, scoring 12 goals in 29 appearances in all competitions. He will be looking to use his pace and skill to cause problems for the FC Basel 1893 defence.
Overall, this promises to be a fascinating encounter between two teams with different styles of play. FC Basel 1893 will be looking to control possession and create chances, while OGC Nice will be looking to hit on the counter-attack and take advantage of any mistakes from their opponents.