NK Maribor vs Hammarby IF Preview 29/07/2021
The 2nd legs of the 2nd qualifying round ties in the Europa Conference League are being played this week and Thursday evening’s Slovenian hosts, Maribor, face a tough assignment in this return leg against their Swedish counterparts, as the hosts look to overhaul a two-goal deficit.
Maribor succumbed to a heavy 3-1 loss away from home at the Tele2 Arena in last week’s 1st leg clash in Stockholm, leaving the home side with little option other than to attack from the whistle at their Ljudski vrt ground.
— NK Maribor (@nkmaribor) July 28, 2021
Maribor had previously been enjoying a successful string of results as the hosts had won each of their preceding four games on the trot which included a 1st qualifying round 2-0 win on aggregate against Armenian outfit, Urartu.
The hosts have also won four out of their last five games on home turf in all competitions but they’ll be facing a different prospect altogether on Thursday night as they find themselves two goals adrift of Hammarby before a ball has even been kicked.
Maribor have scored 2 goals or more in three of these last five games at home and the hosts will no doubt be hoping they can fire up in front of goal in this return leg.
Hammarby meanwhile, know they need take no unnecessary risks in this 2nd leg in Slovenia as they hold a valuable two-goal lead after their resounding 3-1 win at the Tele2 Arena last week.
Having won eight out of their last nine matches in all competitions, Hammarby manager, Milos Milojevic, will be confident that his side can at least avoid defeat in this return leg, a result which would seal their place in the 3rd qualifying round of this inaugural competition.
Whilst recent results away from home could have been better, Hammarby have still managed to win five of their last eight games on the road in all competitions, achieving wins on their travels at Oskarshamns and Djurgardens in the Svenska Cupen along with an Allsvenskan win at Orebro.
Hammarby have also made a positive start to their domestic campaign, sitting in 4th place after 12 matches played to date, while Maribor’s Slovenian 1.SNL season has only just begun, and match fitness may well play a part towards the latter stages of this 2nd leg, with Hammarby doing enough to progress to the next round.