AZ Alkmaar are in Norway on Thursday for the first leg of their Europa Conference League last 16 tie with Bodø/Glimt. The kick-off is at 20.00.

AZ Alkmaar breezed to the last 16 of the competition after topping their group that contained Randers, Cluj, and Jablonec. However, they will now come up against their toughest test yet with the surprise package Bodø/Glimt.

The Norwegian side may not have started their league campaign just yet but they are impressing in the competition. After dropping into the Europa Conference League after losing to Legia Warsaw in the Champions League qualifiers, Bodø/Glimt reached the group stages, where they finished second and managed to beat AS Roma 6-1. They then went on to hammer Celtic 5-1 on aggregate to set up the tie with AZ Alkmaar.

Apart from a loss to Ajax in the KNVB Cup semi-final, AZ Alkmaar have been in excellent form and they go into the clash on the back of a 3-1 win over NEC Nijmegen which means they remain in the battle for a top three place in the Eredivisie.

Team News

AZ Alkmaar goes into the game without Fredrik Midtso meaning Pascal Jansen needs to decide who starts in the midfield in his absence. Owen Wijndal missed the win over NEC but he should return at left-back.

Possible AZ line-up: Vindahl-Jensen; Sugawara, Hatzidiakos, Martins Indi, Wijndal; De Wit, Reijnders, Clasie, Evjen; Karlsson, Pavlidis

Bodo/Glimt have no fresh injury concerns or suspensions meaning that they could name the same eleven that defeated Celtic in their last Conference League clash.

Possible Bodo/Glimt line-up: Smits; Sampsted, Moe, Hoibraten, Wembangomo; Vetlesen, Hagen, Saltnes; Solbakken, Pellegrino, Espejord

Odds

Bodo/Glimt 21/10 Draw 23/10 AZ 69/50

Can AZ Alkmaar return to the Netherlands with a victory?

This is a very tricky tie for AZ Alkmaar who comes up against a side full of confidence and danger. AS Roma and Celtic have already been hammered by the Norwegians in their stadium and AZ needs to avoid that if they are to get through to the quarter-finals.

Pascal Jansen’s side are organised and in good form with Jordy Clasie recently earning an Oranje recall and Jesper Karlsson scoring for fun. If AZ are at their best they can definitely come back to the Netherlands with a good result.




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