European third round options revealed
The draw for the third round of both the UEFA Champions League and the UEFA Europa League takes place in Nyon, Switzerland on Monday and Dundalk FC’s name will be in the hat for both.
Having defeated Latvia’s Riga FC in dramatic fashion in the UEFA Champions League first qualifying round on Wednesday, the Lilywhites now take on Azerbaijan champions Qarabag in the second round, with the first leg taking place at Oriel Park this Wednesday (24 July).
By then, the two teams will have learned their fate for the next round, win or lose, as the victors progress in the UEFA Champions League and the losers drop into the UEFA Europa League.
As the seeded second round team, Qarabag’s UEFA co-efficient of 22 is used to determine the seedings in the draw for whoever wins the tie. However, this is not high enough for a seeded spot in the UEFA Champions League draw, so the winners of tie could face a clash with last season’s semi-finalists Ajax or Scottish giants Celtic.
Losing Champions League teams are automatically seeded for the next round of Europa League qualifying and so Dundalk or Qarabag will be seeded in the Champions route of the Europa League third qualifying round.
Their opponents will be a losing side from the first or preliminary round of Champions League qualifying, who have been seeded by coefficient and split into two groups for Monday’s draw.
Dundalk and Qarabag are in Group 2 and their potential opponents include FC Sarajevo of Bosnia & Herzogovina – who received a bye into round three – along with Partizani Tirana of Albania – defeated by Qarabag in round one – and Kazakhstan powerhouses Astana.
The full list of Dundalk’s possible opponents, along with draw times, can be found below (nationality abbreviation in brackets).
UEFA Champions League third qualifying round – Draw 11:00 IST
Celtic (SCO) v Nõmme Kalju (EST)
København (DEN) v The New Saints (WAL)
GNK Dinamo (CRO) v Saburtalo (GEO)
BATE Borisov (BLR) v Rosenborg (NOR)
APOEL (CYP) v Sutjeska (MNE)
UEFA Europa League third qualifying round – Draw approx. 12:25 IST
Partizani (ALB) / Sheriff Tiraspol (MDA)
Slovan Bratislava (SVK) / Feronikeli (KOS)
FC Santa Coloma (AND) / Astana (KAZ)
Shkëndija (MKD) / Dudelange (LUX)
*Losers of UEFA Champions League first qualifying round tie between Sarajevo and Celtic given bye to third qualifying round