VfL Wolfsburg-Torwart Koen Casteels klopft Paulo Otavio auf die Schulter.
24.09.2020
First Team

Desna’s European debut

All you need to know about VfL’s Europa League match against Ukrainian outfit Desna Chernihiv.

VfL Wolfsburg-Torwart Koen Casteels klopft Paulo Otavio auf die Schulter.

VfL Wolfsburg need to win three qualifiers to seal an immediate return to the UEFA Europa League group stage this season. The Wolves cleared their first hurdle last week, beating FK Kukesi 4-0 in Albania.

If they get the better of Desna Chernihiv at the AOK Stadion on Thursday 24 September (kick-off 20:15 CEST), VfL will face either FC St. Gallen or AEK Athens away from home in next week’s crucial play-off (on 1 October).

We’ve compiled all the key facts and figures on Desna ahead of this week’s second qualifying round:

  • Founded in 1960, Desna were promoted to the Premier Liha for the first time in 2018. After finishing eighth in their debut top-flight campaign, the north Ukrainian outfit clinched a place in the Europa League qualifying rounds with a fourth-place finish in 2019/20.

  • Desna have played three league matches so far this term, winning one and drawing two – including an impressive stalemate against record Ukrainian champions Dynamo Kiev on Matchday 2.

  • This will be Desna’s first ever appearance in European competition. As such, the trip to Wolfsburg is set to be a very special occasion for the club.

  • Desna head coach Oleksandr Ryabokon has been in charge of the club for eight years.

  • Admir Mehmedi spent one-and-a-half years in the Ukrainian top flight, making 25 appearances for Dynamo Kiev before joining Freiburg in 2013. However, Mehmedi has never faced Desna before now.

  • VfL have won eight of their last 10 Europa League home matches, losing only to KAA Gent (1-3) and Shakhtar Donetsk (1-2).

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