Our Genk U-19s are heading south to face Atletico Madrid in the Round of 16 of the UEFA Youth League. In the shadow of the Estadio Wanda Metropolitano, our youngsters will compete for a coveted place in the quarterfinals. The winner of the tie between Italian side AC Milan and the Ukrainians of Ruh Lviv awaits the winner.  

On Monday, February 13, 16 balls went into the drum for the draw for the 1/8th finals of the Youth League. After the victory against the top Italian club Juventus, our boys were once again able to prepare for a major European duel. The eight group winners from the Champions League Path (in which the U19s played the same group stage fixtures as their respective first teams) came together in the draw. The eight winners of the play-in ended up in the other draw. They were played between the runners-up from the group stage of the Champions League Path and the rest of the teams from the Domestic Champions Path, in which the national champions from the various European youth competitions competed against each other over two rounds.

A trip to Madrid on the schedule

Our youngsters can once again prepare for a big matchup. On February 28, they will take on their counterparts from Atletico Madrid in the shadow of the iconic Estadio Wanda Metropolitano in Madrid. The Spanish superpower were group winners in group B of the Champions League Path earlier in the tournament. Not only did they finish ahead of FC Porto and Bayern Leverkusen, they also twice beat Club Brugge's U-19s. In Bruges it was 1-3, and in Madrid 2-1. It’s up to our boys to do better.

Sébastien Pocognoli, coach of the U-19s, looks ahead to the top match against the Spanish superpower.

“Anything is possible in the U-19 category. The game against Juventus proved that. For our boys this will be another experience they will never forget. First of all, I want them to enjoy it to the maximum; we can do a lot. Even though we will have to do without our enthusiastic home supporters, we will once again get the most out of it,” says our coach.