Cypriot teams learn their fates in UCL and UEL early qualifying rounds
The Cypriot teams that have qualified for European play have learned their opponents in the upcoming UEFA Champions and Europa League early qualifying rounds.
The Cypriot champions, APOEL, will enter UEFA Champions League qualifying in the second qualifying round. They will face the winner of the previous round tie between Slovan Bratislava (Slovakia) and Sutjeska (Montenegro). This is a somewhat favorable draw, as APOEL could have drawn Scottish powerhouse Celtic, or Serbian side Crvena Zvezda, also known as Red Star Belgrade. The first leg will be played on the road on July 23/24 and the return leg in Cyprus one week later.
As for the Cypriot teams that will be attempting to qualify for the UEFA Europa League group stages, the draw results are as follows:
AEK Larnaca will begin in the first qualifying round against Moldovan side Petrocub-Hincesti, playing the first leg at home before traveling to Moldova for the second leg. Should they advance, they will play the winner between Levski Sofia (Bulgaria) and Ruzomberok (Slovakia) in the following round.
Apollon will enter in the same round and face Lithuanian side, Kauno Žalgiris. Apollon will travel for the first leg and host the second leg. If Apollon advance they will play the winner of Brann (Norway) and Shamrock Rovers (Ireland) with the first leg on the road.
As the Cypriot Cup winners, AEL Limassol, will proceed directly to the second qualifying round, where they will face Greek side Aris Thessaloniki. AEL have never faced Greek opposition before in Europe. Aris will host the first leg of this two-legged tie.