Two teams already qualified for next season’s Europa League look to cap their seasons with the Conference League crown as Roma take on Feyenoord.
Jose Mourinho can add another piece of silverware to his bulging trophy cabinet if Roma beat Feyenoord to be crowned the inaugural UEFA Europa Conference League champions on Wednesday.
Five years on from lifting the Europa League title with Manchester United, ‘The Special One’ is in the frame to collect his fifth continental crown but faces a stern test from Arne Slot’s men in Tirana.
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Game Date: May 25, 2022
Game Time: 2:30 p.m. ET
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After a difficult start to life in Rotterdam, Slot has succeeded in steering the Feyenoord ship from the depths of Conference League qualifying to the competition’s crescendo. His side is already in next season’s Europa League after finishing third in the Eredivisie, as have Roma after placing sixth in Serie A.
The midweek decider will be Feyenoord’s first European final since they beat Borussia Dortmund to lift the UEFA Cup (now the Europa League) in 2002.
The wait has been more agonizing for the Giallorossi, who haven’t contested a continental final since they faced Italian rivals Inter Milan in the 1991 UEFA Cup climax. Roma lost 2-1 over two legs on that occasion but will be hopeful that 90 minutes is enough to finish the job in Albania.
Mourinho defeated Ajax to taste European glory at the end of his maiden season with United, but the former Chelsea and Real Madrid chief has taken on a more modest stance before facing Feyenoord:
Roma got the better of Premier League contenders Leicester City in the semi-finals to book their final berths, and Wednesday’s decider will mark their 15th and final game in Europe this season.
Feyenoord have had to prove themselves more in a Conference League campaign that started all the way back in July, concluding in what will be their 19th fixture of the tournament. Slot’s side have recorded just one defeat compared to Roma’s three along the way, indicating the Eredivisie contenders are the more difficult outfit to beat.
Roma fans will rejoice at the news Nicolo Zaniolo is expected to be fit for Wednesday, though midfield puppeteer Henrikh Mkhitaryan is expected to miss out due to a long-standing hamstring issue.
Ofir Marciano keeps his place between the posts for Feyenoord as No. 1 Justin Bijlow remains sidelined, while Cyriel Dessers — the Conference League’s top scorer on 10 goals — plays his final game for the club before returning to Belgian outfit Genk.
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