Fenerbahçe qualified for the UEL play-off from 3rd place in the Super Lig last season finishing 2 points behind their city rivals Besiktas and Galatasaray. They finished third in the UEFA Europa League Group D behind Eintracht Frankfurt and Olympiakos. The Turkish side managed to win 1 game against 4th-place Antwerp.
The Red-Whites finished second in the UEFA Europa Conference League Group E behind Fayenoord and ahead of Union Berlin and Maccabi Haifa with 2 wins, 2 draws and 2 defeats.
The first game will be played in Istanbul on 17 February 2022 from 6:45 CET. The second leg at Eden will be played on 24 February from 9 pm CET.
Fenerbahçe currently sit 5th in the Turkish Super Lig, 8 points behind the table leader Trabzonspor and 1 point behind 4th-place Istanbul Başakşehir (the last place securing the UECL qualification next year). The biggest name in the squad is undoubtedly former Real Madrid and Arsenal midfielder Mesut Özil, Brazilian midfielder Luiz Gustavo – former Bayern Munich player – also wears Fenerbahçe shirt now. There is also one Czech in the squad – full-back Filip Novák who is also member of the Czech national team.
“It will be a great tie. As a lifelong Arsenal fan, I have always admired Mesut Özil, it would be great to meet him on the pitch,” Slavia midfielder Daniel Samek said after the draw.
Manager Jindřich Trpišovský added: „There were many clubs we have met before in European competitions. I wanted Fenerbahçe because of their history. They are a big club with beautiful stadium and incredible fans. It is a great honour for us to meet such a giant.”
Fenerbahçe were among teams Lukáš Masopust also wished to be drawn against. “It was one of three clubs I have hoped for, because of the environment surrounding the club. The stadium, the fans,” he said.
Slavia travelled to Istanbul last time almost 19 years ago, for the controversial UEFA Cup round of 16 tie against Besiktas. After a 1-0 home win Slavia were 2-4 down when Karel Piták scored from distance in the added time, but the goal was disallowed due to an alleged offside of another player. Slavia were protesting against this injustice, but the decision could not be revoked and Besiktas were through to the quarter-finals.
Famous is Slavia trip to Turkey in 1923. The Red-Whites played 4 games in Istanbul including a 10-1 win over Fenerbahçe and a 7-0 win over Galatasaray.
Adauto in the UEFA Cup game against Besiktas in 2003.
People watching Slavia game on the court of military barracks in Istanbul in 1923.