Freiburg, Union Berlin and Bayer Leverkusen are hoping to get their hands on the UEFA Europa League trophy. - © Adam Warzawa - Pool/Getty Images
Freiburg, Union Berlin and Bayer Leverkusen are hoping to get their hands on the UEFA Europa League trophy. - © Adam Warzawa - Pool/Getty Images

UEFA Europa League last 16: Freiburg face Juventus, Union Berlin meet Union Saint-Gilloise, Bayer Leverkusen play Ferencvaros


Bundesliga trio Union Berlin, Freiburg and Bayer Leverkusen each learned their UEFA Europa League fate after the draw for the tournament’s Round of 16 was made in Switzerland.

Christian Streich’s Freiburg advanced to the knockout rounds as the unbeaten Group G winners and have been rewarded with a two-legged test against Italian giants Juventus. Meanwhile, as conquerors of Ajax in the knockout round play-offs, Union will face familiar foes in Union Saint-Gilloise, the Belgian side who pipped the Berliners to top spot in Group D this term. Leverkusen also reached the last 16 thanks to a play-off win; Xabi Alonso’s men ousting Monaco. The Werkself will next face Ferencvaros for a place in the tournament’s last eight.

Watch: Freiburg's Vincenzo Grifo reacts to Juventus draw

Currently in the thick of a thrilling Bundesliga challenge as they sit fourth in the domestic standings, Freiburg are also still in contention for the DFB Cup. The team from the Black Forest will play the first leg of their Europa League Round of 16 tie with Juventus in Turin on 9 March, before hosting the return at their Europa-Park Stadion home a week later. The Serie A side beat Nantes in the Europa League play-offs having finished their UEFA Champions League campaign in third spot in their section.

Union are also flying high and fighting for Bundesliga and Pokal honours. Urs Fischer’s team will have plenty of groundwork already laid when Saint-Gilloise come to town next month. Both teams each won a group stage game 1-0 away from home when they faced each other in Europa League Group D. Just like Freiburg, Union are competing at this stage of the tournament for the first time.

Josip Juranovic and his Union teammates will be formidable opponents in the next round. - Imago

Not so Leverkusen, who of all the teams remaining in this year’s competition have played the most past knockout games. This will be Bayer's eighth time competing in the Europa League knockouts and the 1998 UEFA Cup winners are coming up against a Ferencvaros side who finished above Monaco, Trabzonspor and Crvena Zvezda in Europa League Group H. Alonso's outfit will play the first leg at home, before travelling to Budapest - the host city of this season’s tournament final - for the return fixture.

Eintracht Frankfurt - one of four Bundesliga teams currently competiting in the Champions League last 16 - won the Europa League last season.