Hibernians eager to bounce back as they face Folgore

Hibernians will be eager to bounce back from the disappointing result and performance against FC Flora Tallinn of Estonia as they take on SS Folgore of San Marino in the first leg of the second qualifying round champions path of the UEFA Europa Conference League at the San Marino Stadium on Tuesday, kick-off at 21:00.

In fact, after being eliminated from the UEFA Champions League, the Paolites move to the inaugural UEFA Europa Conference League where they hope to qualify for a third round of a UEFA competition for the first time in the history of the club.

After losing 2-0 in Tallinn, Hibs lost 0-3 at Ta’ Qali last week but against Folgore, they will be all out to get a positive result considering the positive record Maltese clubs have against teams from San Marino. The latest addition to the Hibs squad was that of goalkeeper Ibhraim Kone. On the other hand, Sergio Raphael is set to return for the Paolites after serving a suspension.

SS Folgore Falciano won the championship last season – the fifth title in the history of the club after defeating Birkirkara’s opponent in the UEFA Europa Conference League first qualifying round, La Fiorita 1-0 after extra-time in the play-offs final. They entered the UEFA Champions League preliminary round, losing 0-2 to Pristina of Kosovo.

For Folgore, this is the second time they were drawn with a Maltese opponent. In 2017, they were paired with Valletta in the UEFA Europa League with the Citizens winning 2-0 at Ta’ Qali and 1-0 in San Marino.

The second leg will be played at the Centenary Stadium on Tuesday 27. The winner of this two-legged tie will be facing Riga FC of Latvia or Shkëndija of North Macedonia in the third qualifying round.

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