Roma v Trabzonspor preview: Last hurdle before Conference League group stage

Roma welcome Trabzonspor to Stadio Olimpico on Thursday to conclude their Europa Conference League play-off tie.

After winning the first leg 2-1 in Turkey, although no longer benefiting from the away goals rule, Roma have the advantage at the half-way point. However, at least 90 minutes of battle await before they can think about the group stage.

Roma will fortunately be backed by a home crowd again, with tickets for both the Curva Sud and Tribuna Tevere selling out. Those in attendance will hope to see their side get over the line.

Although a draw would be enough for qualification, Jose Mourinho said at his pre-match press conference that he would only consider that if the game was all square in the final stages. From the outset, rather, his side will be playing to win.

They go into the game with full confidence of doing so, after following up their first-leg win with a battling victory against Fiorentina in their Serie A opener. Tammy Abraham made a bright impression on his debut in that game, but Mourinho must decide if he is yet ready to start two games in a row, or if Eldor Shomurodov or Borja Mayoral may be better suited for this game.

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He will have similar thinking to do in midfield, where Bryan Cristante and Jordan Veretout have started both games so far despite neither completing a full pre-season. It remains the main area Roma are looking to strengthen in the transfer market, but they will have to make do with what they have on Thursday. Interestingly, Mourinho gave his backing to Amadou Diawara at his press conference, so perhaps he could be a rotation option if needed.

As fans (and match preview writers!) have been getting used to, the club have not released their squad list in advance for the fixture, so any further team news will have to wait until one hour before kick-off.

Roma will be hoping to get the job done to qualify for a tournament they would be one of the favourites for, but the tie is far from over and a big effort will be required again.

Kick-off is at 6pm UK time.

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