Following a 2-2 draw at the Centenary Stadium last week, Gzira United and Glentoran will be fighting for a spot in the second qualifying round of the UEFA Europa Conference League in the second leg at the The BetMcLean Oval in Belfast on Thursday, kick-off at 20:30.
The tie is wide open following the draw in the first leg and a clash with the winner of the tie between F91 Diddeleng of Luxembourg and Saint Patrick’s Athletic FC of Ireland awaits the winner.
Last week, the Maroons conceded an early goal but managed to turn the score in their favour with two goals late in the first half. However, early in the second half, they conceded another goal and had to settle for a draw.
In Belfast, Darren Abdilla’s side will be aiming for a positive which could see them through. A win would put either side in the next round while in case of a draw, extra-time and possibly the penalty shoot-out would determine which side would reach the second qualifying round.
Gzira should welcome back in the starting line-up Zach Scerri who missed the first leg as he was serving a suspension.
Last year, Gzira had a great run in Europe after eliminating Atletic Club d’Escaldes and Radnicki Nis, losing only to Wolfsberger in the third qualifying round of the UEFA Europa Conference League. However, even in the previous three participations in the UEFA Europa League or the UEFA Europa Conference League, the Maroons had always qualified for a second round.
Glentoran had reached the quarter-finals of the Cup Winners Cup in 1973/74 but in recent years, they never went beyond the second qualifying round.