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Europa League first knockout round draw

Jamie Spencer
Barcelona were in the Europa League knockout draw
Barcelona were in the Europa League knockout draw / OZAN KOSE/GettyImages
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Barcelona have been paired with Napoli in the first Europa League knockout round following their elimination from the Champions League group stage.

This is the first time that Barcelona have been in UEFA's secondary club competition since they were knocked out of the 2003/04 UEFA Cup by Celtic at the fourth round stage.

Napoli was arguably the toughest opponent available to the Catalans.

Borussia Dortmund vs Rangers and Porto vs Lazio are two of the other standout ties.

The preliminary knockout round of 16 clubs has replaced the last 32 of the competition following UEFA’s format reshuffle, with the eight Europa League group runners-up each drawn with one of the eight clubs that finished third in a Champions League group.


2021/22 Europa League first knockout round draw

Sevilla vs Dinamo Zagreb
Atalanta vs Olympiacos
RB Leipzig vs Real Sociedad
Barcelona vs Napoli
Zenit St Petersburg vs Real Betis
Borussia Dortmund vs Rangers
Sheriff vs Braga
Porto vs Lazio


The eight winners from this round will progress to the last 16, at which stage the eight Europa League group winners will also enter the knockout rounds.

Heading into 2022, knockout round first leg ties will be played on Thursday 17 February, with the return legs to follow a week later on Thursday 24 February. The seeded clubs, revealed second in the draw process, will play the second leg of the tie at home.

This is the first season in which the away goals rule has been scrapped, so extra-time is guaranteed if the aggregate score is level at the end of the second leg.


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