Without the allegedly wishing Spurs star Harry Kane and without several of the best players in the starting line-up, Tottenham Hotspur suffered a bitter defeat in the Conference League playoff first leg. In Portuguese First Division club Pacos de Ferreira, new coach Nuno Espirito Santo’s team lost as the favorite with 0:1 (0:1). Four days after the inaugural 1-0 win over Manchester City in the Premier League, the manager put a squad packed with many young players around former Hoffenheim Ryan Sessegnon – who embarrassed himself. Lucas Silva (45th minute) put the 2019 Champions League finalist at a disadvantage for the second leg in London next Thursday.
Former Tottenham boss Jose Mourinho has done better with his new club, Roma. In the first competitive appearance of “The Special One” for the Italian Serie A club, Roma achieved a 2-1 (0-0) victory over the Turkish first-class team Trabzonspor. Lorenzo Pellegrini (55) and Eldor Shmorodov (81) led Mourinho’s team to win their goals. Andreas Cornelius (64.) achieved temporary compensation for the Turks, for whom Napoli legend and newcomer Marek Hamsik played from the start. The second leg matches of the Conference League qualifiers will be held next Thursday. The group stage will take place on August 27.
This will most likely happen with German participation. On Thursday evening, Union Berlin defeated Kuopio BC of Finland in the playoff first leg. With 32 teams playing in the group stage, the Conference League should allow international competition, especially for teams from smaller nations. The new competition includes 141 matches in 15 game weeks. The defending champions will automatically qualify for the group stage of the European League next season. The competition must also be financially worthwhile. According to the information received from Sports Show A total of 235 million euros will be distributed to 32 teams. The group stage begins on September 16th.