Glentoran Prepare For New UEFA Competition

A limited crowd of supporters are getting ready to head to The Oval tonight for Glentoran's first European adventure of the season.

The Glens will play their first fixture in the newly created Europa Conference League against Welsh side The New Saints, qualifying after finishing third in the 2020-21 Irish Premiership.

They come into the game off the back of friendly wins against Dundela and Coleraine.

Speaking ahead of the European game, manager Mick McDermott said: "I have been pleased with our pre-season performances in the friendlies against Coleraine and Dundela. The players have all had a couple of valuable workouts, against good, competitive teams. While friendlies are essentially about gaining match fitness, it's also nice to have got a couple of wins under our belts.
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"We face a strong challenge in this First Preliminary Round. The New Saints have consistent experience of European competition, having been perennial Welsh League champions during the last decade. So they will not be strangers to the pressures of this occasion.

"We have done our homework on them, and we know it will be a tough test for us. They have talented and experienced players and have made a couple of key signings this past two weeks.

"It is European competition, and the stakes are high so both teams will be well prepared and show each other respect."

McDermott went on to confirm Seanan Clucas will be missing for the first leg.

The teams will meet again for the second leg next week, Thursday 15 July, with the eventual winners facing Gibraltar's Europa or Latvia's Kauno Žalgiris in the next round.

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