A 2-0 defeat in the first leg means that Bayer 04 Leverkusen have a mountain to climb on Thursday night in their UEFA Europa League Round of 16 fixture against Spanish outfit Villarreal CF (kick-off 19:00CET/18:00GMT).

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Die Werkself's loss at the Estadio El Madrigal last week means only a significant victory will be enough to see them through to the quarter-finals of the tournament. While Roger Schmidt's side will be buoyed by the 1-0 win over Hamburger SV last weekend - a first success in five competitive games - there remain injury-enforced selection headaches at the back.

Ömer Toprak returned to action against HSV only to sustain yet another injury, meaning he joins Kevin Kampl, Lars Bender, Sebastian Boenisch and Roberto Hilbert on the Leverkusen treatment table. Christoph Kramer's fitness is also in doubt, and Tin Jedvaj is suspended after being sent off late on in the first leg.

Those absences are heavy blows for Schmidt's side, but Javier 'Chicharito' Hernandez, Hakan Calhanoglu and Karim Bellarabi offer a serious threat to the Yellow Submarine, while the Rhineland outfit's home record is excellent in Europe this term.

Watch: Leverkusen 1-0 Hamburg – Matchday 26 highlights

Read: Toprak out of Villarreal clash due to injury

Match stats

  • Villareal have won all of the three games they have played against Leverkusen.
  • The only other tie between these two teams was also in the UEFA Europa League Round of 16, back in 2011. The Yellow Submarine won 3-2 in Germany and then 2-1 in Spain against a Leverkusen side managed by Jupp Heynckes.
  • Leverkusen have won just ten of the 34 games they have played against Spanish opposition.
  • Die Werkself have beaten Spanish teams by three goals on three separate occasions in their own stadium. A similar result on Thursday would see them reach the quarter-finals.
  • Bayer are unbeaten in their last six home games in UEFA competition.
  • Chicharito spent last season in Spain with Villarreal's domestic rivals Real Madrid CF.
  • Bayer forward Admir Mehmedi turns 25 the day before the game.

Possible line-ups

Leverkusen: Leno - Becker, Tah, Papadopoulos, Wendell – Frey, Ramalho – Bellarabi, Calhanoglu – Hernandez, Kießling

Villarreal: Areola – Mario, Bailly, Victor Ruiz, Rukavina – Trigueros, Soriano – Suarez, Castillejo – Soldado, Bakambu