The Cypriot teams opponents in the next qualifying round
All four Cypriot teams competing in either the Champions or Europa League were victorious in their respective 1st leg matches and are all in pole-position to advance to the next round. If all goes well this week in the return leg, they have an idea who they will play in the third qualifying round of their respective competitions.
AGONAsport looks at which teams will be up next for the Cypriot sides if they manage to advance to the next round of qualifying in either the Champions or Europa League.
APOEL: Talks about the poor performance against Dudelange at the GSP stadium (1-0 APOEL win) last Wednesday are still surrounding the club and the hope is that the team improves their display and finishes the job in Luxemburg this week. If the Cypriot champions advance to the third qualifying round, their opponents will be Romanian champions Vitorul Constanta. Founded in 2009 and owned by Romanian football legend George Hadji, who is also the coach, Vitorul has quickly become one of the best teams in Romania. With mostly young Romanian players making up the roster, Vitorul is a young and thirsty for success. Surely APOEL have the experience and the talent to overcome the Romanians, however if the Galazokitrinoi do not improve from their recent performance, they will surely be in trouble.
AEL Limassol: AEL had a good performance in Luxemburg against Progres and by finishing the job in Cyprus, they will then travel to Austria to face Austria Wien in the Europa League third qualifying round. They are coached by APOEL’s former manager, Thorsten Fink, and will surely be AEL’s toughest opponents yet in qualifying until now. Austria Wien finished 2nd in last season’s Austrian Bundesliga, in a league that is dominated by RB Salzburg.
AEK Larnaca: If AEK advance to the third qualifying round past Cork City, they will visit either FYROM or Belarus to face the winner of the pair between Rabotnicki and Dinamo Minsk. The first match ended in a 1-1 draw as Rabotnicki played hosts to the Belarusian side. Neither side will scare the Larnakeis as AEK look to have the easiest draw on paper from the three Cypriot sides in the Europa League third qualifying round.
Apollon Limassol: A 3-0 win over Zaria in the first leg has given the Cypriot Cup holders a clear advantage for progression to the next round of Europa League qualifying. If they advance, they will face either Aberdeen from Scotland or Siroki Brijeg from Bosnia. Neither side will strike fear into Apollon and with serious and effective performances like the one against Zaria, the Limassol side will be considered the favorites over both teams.