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Bayer Leverkusen must end a seven-match losing run against Italian opposition with a victory against Roma on Thursday if they are to retain hope of keeping the UEFA Europa League trophy in Germany. Roma's 1-0 win in the first leg of this semifinal at the Stadio Olimpico gives the UEFA Europa Conference League holders a slender advantage as they eye back-to-back European silverware. Here's what you need to know: 

How to watch and odds

  • Date: Thursday, May 18 | Time: 3 p.m. ET
  • Location: BayArena-- Leverkusen, Germany
  • Live stream: Paramount+
  • Odds: Bayer +102; Draw: +225; Roma +265 (via Caesars Sportsbook)

How they got here

Bayer Leverkusen: The German side had a disappointing UEFA Champions League campaign in Group B, failing to find the net in four of their six matches but edging through to the UEFA Europa League in third place with five points thanks to head-to-head superiority against Atletico de Madrid. They then needed penalties to eliminate Monaco in the knockout playoffs before cruising past Hungarian champions Ferencvaros with a pair of 2-0 wins, the second at the Puskas Arena in Budapest, the venue for this season's UEFA Europa League final. They then ousted competition debutants Union Saint-Gilloise in the quarterfinals, a 1-1 home draw followed by a 4-1 win in Brussels with goals from Moussa Diaby, Mitchel Bakker, Jeremie Frimpong and Adam Hložek.

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AS Roma: Roma, who lifted their first UEFA trophy last spring after beating Feyenoord 1-0 in Tirana in the inaugural UEFA Europa Conference League final, avoided a return to that competition by finishing as runners-up in UEFA Europa League Group C to Real Betis. Jose Mourinho's team then came from behind to beat Salzburg in the knockout playoffs before advancing to the quarterfinals at the expense of Real Sociedad. They made it to their third European semifinal in as many years by getting the better of Feyenoord again, a late strike from Paolo Dybala taking the tie into extra time, where further goals from Stephan El Shaarawy and Lorenzo Pellegrini clinched victory.

Projected XI

Bayer Leverkusen: Hradecky; Tapsoba, Tah, Hincapié; Frimpong, Amiri, Palacios, Bakker; Diaby, Wirtz; Adli. 

AS Roma: Rui Patricio; Mancini, Cristante, Ibanez; Zalewski, Bove, Matic, Wijnaldum, Spinazzola; Pellegrini, Abraham.


It won't be an easy one for Roma, who will try to defend the first leg win and qualify for their second European final in a row. Pick: Bayer 1, Roma 1.