Francesco Guidolin urges Udinese to focus on PAOK in the Europa League and not on injuries to Antonio Di Natale and Mauricio Isla.
Both players were hurt during the 2-1 home defeat to Milan last week and Isla underwent surgery today for knee ligament damage that will keep him out for around three months.
Top scorer Di Natale suffered a micro-fracture to his foot and will also miss out on Thursday’s European clash.
“It is a difficult encounter against a team that picked up 12 points in the group phase, eliminating Tottenham,” warned Guidolin.
“That is all I need to say in order to present PAOK. The team is in good shape, very dangerous and going through an extremely positive period of form.”
The Friulani have been accused of snubbing the Europa League in favour of Serie A, where they have the opportunity to qualify for the Champions League.
“We already have European competition right here and we will give all our efforts to continue this journey, albeit aware of the difficulties that we face.
“There are absentees, but we have to focus on who is able to play tomorrow. It’s XI against XI and we will try to win.”
PAOK visit the Stadio Friuli at 20.05 UK time on Thursday evening. They knocked Udinese out of the 2000-01 UEFA Cup.
Udinese squad: Handanovic, Padelli, Romo; Armero, Basta, Benatia, Danilo, Domizzi, Ekstrand, Ferronetti, Neuton, Pasquale; Abdi, Battocchio, Pazienza, Pinzi; Fabbrini, Floro Flores, Piscopo