UEFA Europa League Football is back!
Having beaten Maltese giants Valletta FC, the Lakesiders would progress to the Second Qualifying Round of the Europa League for the first time in our history!
The draw for the Second Qualifying Round was conducted on the 1st of September, and it did not disappoint! The Lakesiders were originally drawn at home to Standard Liege from Belgium, however hours following the draw, the fixture was reversed, meaning Bala would then play at the Stade Maurice Dufrasne, home of Standard Liege.
Just 3 weeks ago since the Lakesiders’ historic win out in Malta, Bala will be up against totally different opposition, as tomorrow’s opponents (17th of September) have been regulars in European Competitions, having made the group stage last season in the Europa League, matching up against Arsenal, Eintracht Frankfurt and Vitoria SC.
Standard have started their league season and are now 3rd in the Belgian Pro League having won 3, drawn 1 and lost 1. While Bala are only one game in, which was played at the home of the Champions of Wales in Connah’s Quay Nomads, where the points were shared following a very late wonder strike by Nomads’ Sameron Dool.
Over the summer, Standard have made 8 signings with some going back out on loan, with a squad size of 30 players, compared to Bala’s squad of 20. Standard’s biggest goal threat is Maxime Lestienne who provided 27 League Goals for Les Rouches last season, and contributed 5 goals in the Europa League.
Manager Colin Caton will take charge of his 10th European Fixture when the Lakesiders take on Standard tomorrow night (17th of September) having had his first taste of European Football back in 2013 when Bala qualified for the Europa League after beating Port Talbot in a play-off match.