Lokomotiv Plovdiv head coach, Bruno Akrapovich has admitted that he would love nothing more than for his side to be drawn against Tottenham Hotspur in the next round of Europa League qualifiers and to get the better of the Lilywhites.
Jose Mourinho has already declared his intention to win the Europa League next season (Football.London) but his team still have a lot of work to do to even book their place in the group stage of the competition.
Spurs will have to navigate three qualification matches, the first of which is set to be held on September 17.
One of the teams that Mourinho’s men can be drawn against in the next round is Bulgarian side, Lokomotiv Plovdiv.
Plovdiv put in an accomplished performance to overcome Montenegrin side Iskra Danilovgrad in the first round of the qualifiers.
After the win over Danilovgrad, Akrapovich announced his intention to get the better of the North Londoners.
Speaking to MBS, the Plovdiv head coach said: “My wish for the draw is to get a team that we can overcome. If we can beat Tottenham at home, I will be very happy.”
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I suspect most Spurs fans would have not even heard of Lokomotiv Plovdiv and so would quite fancy their team’s chances against the Bulgarian side. However, Akrapovich’s statement shows the kind of issue that Mourinho’s side will be facing both in the qualification phase as well as in the group stage. We are one of the biggest clubs in the competition and the clash against us will be a cup final for whoever we draw. So we certainly cannot afford to think that we just need to show up to progress to the next round. We have to be willing to match our opponents’ work rate.
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