Friday 20 April 2018

Baraclough ready for duel with old friend Solskjaer

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, coach of Molde FK
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, coach of Molde FK

Cian O'Connell

SLIGO ROVERS will face Norwegian side Molde, who are managed by former Manchester United striker Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, in the second qualifying round of the Champions League.

"It's a great draw. I did my UEFA 'A' coaching course with Ole Gunnar several years ago in England. It will be good to catch up and pit our wits against each other," said Rovers boss Ian Baraclough. Sligo will be at home in the first leg on July 16 or 17, with the return tie a week later.

Before then, Baraclough intends to undertake a spying mission in Molde, who are struggling in the Tippeligaen with only two wins from 13 matches.

St Patrick's Athletic will be away to VMFD Zalgiris from Lithuania in the first leg of their Europa League first qualifying round tie, with the winners facing either FK Teteks (Macedonia) or FC Pyunik (Armenia).

Drogheda United will play Malmo at Tallaght Stadium in the first leg of their tie. Pat Fenlon's Hibernian will play the winners in the second qualifying round.

Derry City, who enter the competition at that stage, have been handed a daunting assignment against Turkish outfit Trabzonspor.

Manager Declan Devine said: "Without having to look too hard into it, we know that they possess a lot of quality players with both Premier League and international experience. We know it will be a very difficult tie, but we will look forward to it."

Champions League

2nd qualifying round: Sligo Rovers v Molde IF, Celtic v Cliftonville (Ties to be played on July 16-17 & 23-24)

Europa League

1st qualifying round: Zalgiris v St Pat's Ath, Reykjavik v Glentoran, Drogheda Utd v Malmo, Fuglafjordur v Linfield, Crusaders v Rosenborg (Ties to be played July 4 & 11)

2nd qualifying round: Drogheda Utd or Malmo v Hibernian, Zalgiris or St Pat's Ath v Teteks (Macedonia) or Pyunik (Armenia), Trabzonspor v Derry City (Ties to be played July 18 & 25)

Irish Independent

Sport Newsletter

The best sport action straight to your inbox every morning.

Editor's Choice

Also in Sport