The 2023-24 Europa League Draw produces three group stage rematch's including West Ham vs Freiburg, here's why this is allowed
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The 2023-24 Europa League Draw produces three group stage rematch's including West Ham vs Freiburg, here's why this is allowed

Mar 17, 2024
  • The draw produced three group stage rematch’s including West Ham vs Freiburg
  • The reason West Ham and Freiburg are allowed to play each other again explained
  • For more information follow Mail Sport’s live blog on the Europa League draw 
  • David Moyes doesn’t deserve the negativity towards him at West Ham. It’s ridiculous and shameful for the job he’s done – It’s All Kicking Off podcast 

The draw for the 2023-24 Europa League round of 16 has just took place with some juicy matches set to take place over the coming weeks. 

One match-up many may of not expected is a repeat of West Ham vs Freiburg.

David Moyes‘ side played the German outfit twice in their Europa League group stage, beating them on both occasions.

They won their home tie 2-0 and the away tie 2-1, so why has this happened?

Why are they allowed to play each other again?

West Ham and Freiburg already played each other in the group stages of this season's Europa League

West Ham and Freiburg already played each other in the group stages of this season’s Europa League

The 2023-24 Europa League round of 16 draw took place this morning

The 2023-24 Europa League round of 16 draw took place this morning

West Ham will be looking to replicate their success in  Europe this season after winning the Conference League in 2023

Freiburg and West Ham already faced one another in the group stages of the tournament, where they lost the to games

West Ham and Freiburg were drawn against one another in the round of 16 despite playing each other in the group stages

The reason although controversial depending on who you ask is pretty simple.

The only rule UEFA has for the draw is teams from the same country can’t play each other.

Every other match-up is up for grabs. 

West Ham and Freiburg aren’t the only team to suffer a similar faith. Atalanta, Sporting Lisbon, Qarabag and Bayer Leverkusen all find themselves in the same position. 

Atalanta and Sporting Lisbon faced each other in Group D. 

Unlike the West Ham results which were fairly one sided, one of these games finished in a 1-1 draw whilst Atalanta edged Sporting in their home fixture on a score line of 2-1.

Sporting Lisbon won their play-off game against Borussia Dortmund to advance to the last 16

Atalanta booked their spot in the round of 16 when they topped their Europa League group

Atalanta and Sporting Lisbon face each other in the Europa League round of 16 despited playing one another in the group stages

Similarly Xabi Alonso’s side Bayer Leverkusen went up against Qarabag in Group H.

Leverkusen fans will be pretty pleased with the draw as the German side registered to wins, one of which was a monstrous score line 5-.

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