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Team news vs Molde

Match Preview
// 21 Oct 2020

It is the start of the UEFA Europa League Group Stage and we welcome Molde FK of Norway on Matchday 1.

It is European group stage competition for us and we are drawn in Group B with Arsenal of England, Rapid Vienna of Austria and of course Molde of Norway.

This will be our third meeting with Norwegian opposition after facing Rosenborg in the 2017 season in the UEFA Champions League second qualifying round. Both matches finished 1-1 after ordinary time with Rosenborg taking the win in Trondheim in extra-time.

This will be the 78th European match in Dundalk’s history with their record reading as P78 W16 D19 L33

We are in the middle of a hectic schedule with three matches in a week with a trip to Waterford to come on Sunday before a short voyage to London to face Arsenal.

We are aiming to continue our fine record in Europe and we have already made history by qualifying and that means we have qualified for the second time in groups, something no other Irish club has done, we are now looking to go and repeat the trick of 2016 and pick up points starting tomorrow evening.

How can I follow it?

The match kicks off at the time of 5.55 p.m. at the Tallaght Stadium and we will be carrying updates on official social media streams – @DundalkFC on Twitter, Dundalk FC on Facebook and dundalkfc_ on Instagram also. Post-match reaction will be available on all streams, as well. We will provide you with pre-match, in-play and post-match updates from the evening’s action.

The match will also be available to watch on Virgin Media Television and BT Sport.

21 October 2020; Dundalk players during a training session at Tallaght Stadium in Dublin. Photo by Ben McShane/Sportsfile

Team news

Chris Shields is back after missing the playoff through suspension. Daniel Kelly and Nathan Oduwa are doubts with muscle problems and Dane Massey has a hip problem which sees him sidelined.

How did we fare in Europe in 2019?

We reached the third qualifying round of the Europa League falling to Group Stage qualifiers Slovan Bratislava. That was after we had defeated Riga of Latvia on penalties at this stage of the Champions League qualifiers and then were defeated 4-1 on aggregate by Azerbaijan champions Qarabag.

How has preparation been?

Preparation has been good. We have had three matches in the past 8 days with two wins from three and both of those victories coming on the road. Wins in Cork and Derry were either side of a scoreless draw at Oriel against Bohemians however seven from nine have strengthened our position in third.

How did we qualify?

We started out in the UEFA Champions League first qualifying round against Slovenian champions Celje and that took place in Budapest due to COVID-19 restrictions and we were defeated 3-1 which saw us drop into the UEFA Europa League qualifying phase. Inter Club d’Escaldes of Andorra were first up in the second qualifying round there with a David McMillan goal putting us through. Sheriff of Moldova were next and we were victors on penalties after a 1-1 draw in Transnistria. Faroe Islands champions Ki Klaksvik were our opponents in the playoff round at home and we took a 3-1 win which qualified us for the group stage.

21 October 2020; Michael Duffy during a Dundalk training session at Tallaght Stadium in Dublin. Photo by Ben McShane/Sportsfile

We have been here before….

Yes we have. This is our second group stage qualification in four years and the last time we were drawn in Group D with opponents AZ Alkmaar, Maccabi Tel-Aviv and Zenit St. Petersburg. We managed to take four points with an away draw against AZ and home win against Maccabi.

European results 2014-present

01.07.2014 (Europa League 1st Qualifying Round 1st Leg) Jeunesse Esch 0-2 Dundalk (Towell pen 59, 71)

10.07.2014 (Europa League 1st Qualifying Round 2nd Leg) Dundalk 3-1 Jeunesse Esch (Gartland 8, Byrne 36, Mountney 45; Zydko 55)

17.07.2014 (Europa League 2nd Qualifying Round 1st Leg) Dundalk 0-2 Hajduk Split (Caktas 9, Vlasic 74)

24.07.2014 (Europa League 2nd Qualifying Round 2nd Leg) Hajduk Split 1-2 Dundalk (Kouassi 25; Hoban 66, Byrne 74)

15.07.2015 (Champions League 2nd Qualifying Round 1st Leg) BATE Borisov 2-1 Dundalk (Karnitski 11, Yablonski 38; McMillan 32)

22.07.2015 (Champions League 2nd Qualifying Round 2nd Leg) Dundalk 0-0 BATE Borisov

13.07.2016 (Champions League 2nd Qualifying Round 1st Leg) Dundalk 1-1 FH (McMillan 66; Lennon 77)

20.07.2016 (Champions League 2nd Qualifying Round 2nd Leg) FH 2-2 Dundalk (Hewson 19, Finnbogason 78; McMillan 52, 62)

26.07.2016 (Champions League 3rd Qualifying Round 1st Leg) BATE Borisov 1-0 Dundalk (Gordeichuk 70)

02.08.2016 (Champions League 3rd Qualifying Round 2nd Leg) Dundalk 3-0 BATE Borisov (McMillan 45, 58, Benson 90)

17.08.2016 (Champions League Playoff 1st Leg) Dundalk 0-2 Legia Warsaw (Nikolic pen 56, Prijovic 90)

23.08.2016 (Champions League Playoff 2nd Leg) Legia Warsaw 1-1 Dundalk (Kucharyk 90; Benson 18)

15.09.2016 (Europa League Group D) AZ Alkmaar 1-1 Dundalk (Wuytens 60; Kilduff 88)

29.09.2016 (Europa League Group D) Dundalk 1-0 Maccabi Tel-Aviv (Kilduff 72)

20.10.2016 (Europa League Group D) Dundalk 1-2 Zenit St. Petersburg (Benson 52; Mak 71, Giuliano 77)

03.11.2016 (Europa League Group D) Zenit St. Petersburg 2-1 Dundalk (Giuliano 42, 77; Horgan 52)

24.11.2016 (Europa League Group D)  Dundalk 0-1 AZ Alkmaar (Weghorst 9)

08.12.2016 (Europa League Group D) Maccabi Tel-Aviv 2-1 Dundalk (Ben Chaim pen 21, Micha 38; Dasa 27)

12.07.2017  (Champions League 2nd Qualifying Round 1st Leg) Dundalk 1-1 Rosenborg (McMillan 18; Gartland og 43)

19,07.2017 (Champions League 2nd Qualifying Round 2nd Leg) Rosenborg 2-1 Dundalk – AET (de Lanlay 43, Vilhjálmsson 98; Gartland 12)

12.07.2018 (Europa League 1st Qualifying Round 1st Leg) Levadia Talinn 0-1 (Connolly 54)

19.07.2018 (Europa League 1st Qualifying Round 2nd Leg) Dundalk 2-1 Levadia Tallinn (Hoban 30, Duffy 33; Debelko 41)

26.07.2018 (Europa League 2nd Qualifying Round 1st Leg) Dundalk 0-0 AEK Larnaca

02.08.2018 (Europa League 2nd Qualifying Round 2nd Leg) AEK Larnaca 4-0 Dundalk (Trickovski 13, 38, Chamarro 21, Tomas 87)

10.07.2019 (Champions League 1st Qualifying Round 1st Leg) Dundalk 0-0 Riga FC

17.07.2019 (Champions League 1st Qualifying Round 2nd Leg) Riga FC 0-0 Dundalk (Dundalk win 5-4 on penalties)

24.07.2019 (Champions League 2nd Qualifying Round 1st Leg) Dundalk 1-1 Qarabag FK (Emreli 4; Hoban 78)

31.07.2019 (Champions League 2nd Qualifying Round 2nd Leg) Qarabag FK 3-0 Dundalk (Romero 12, 85, Ailton 77)

06.08.2019 (Europa League 3rd Qualifying Round 1st Leg) Slovan Bratislava 1-0 Dundalk (Holman 86)

13.08.2019 (Europa League 3rd Qualifying Round 2nd Leg) Dundalk 1-3 Slovan Bratislava (Duffy 71; Ratao 12, Cavric 33, Daniel 90)

17.08.2020 (Champions League 1st Qualifying Round) NK Celje 3-0 Dundalk (Kerin 43, Vizinger 89, Dangubic 90+5)

17.09.2020 (Europa League 2nd Qualifying Round) Inter Club de’Escaldes 0-1 Dundalk (McMillan 14)

24.09.2020 (Europa League 3rd Qualifying Round) Sheriff Tiraspol 1-1 Dundalk (Posmac 8; Murray 45) Dundalk win 5-3 on penalties.

01.10.2020 (Europa League Playoff) Dundalk 3-1 Ki Klaksvik (Murray 33, Cleary 48, Kelly 79; Midtskogen 66)