Celtic in line to play AZ Alkmaar in Europa League play-offs

Europa Conference League: Bohemians could face Hibs in playoff round

Uefa’s Giorgio Marchetti during the Europa Conference League playoff round draw in Nyon, Switzerland. Photograph: Getty Images

Uefa’s Giorgio Marchetti during the Europa Conference League playoff round draw in Nyon, Switzerland. Photograph: Getty Images

 

Celtic are on course to play AZ Alkmaar in the Europa League play-offs.

The Hoops will take on the Dutch side if they get past Jablonec of the Czech Republic over the course of the next fortnight.

Tottenham will take on Portuguese side Pacos de Ferreira or Larne in their European opener while Rangers face a potential Champions League play-off against Olympiacos or Ludogorets.

Spurs will be away for the Europa Conference League play-off first leg on August 19th. Porto-based Pacos de Ferreira finished fifth in the league last season and are embarking on their fifth European campaign.

AZ go straight into the Europa League play-off round after finishing third in the Eredivisie last season.

They were unbeaten in their first 32 European home matches until losing to Everton in 2007 and did not lose in four European home games last term. AZ finished third in their Europa League group, taking four points off Napoli, after dropping out of the Champions League qualifiers.

Celtic, who dropped out of the Champions League qualifiers themselves last week, will play Tobol Kostanay of Kazakhstan or MSK Zilina of Slovakia in the Europa Conference League if they suffer another defeat.

St Johnstone will take on Danish side Randers if they shock Galatasaray in the third qualifying round. The Scottish Cup winners will take on Vojvodina of Serbia or Austrians LASK in the Europa Conference League if they lose to the Turks. Rangers will face Olympiacos or Ludogorets if they get past Malmo.

Olympiacos are looking to reach the Champions League group stage for the fourth time in five years. They lost to Arsenal in the last 16 of the Europa League last season after knocking the Gunners out of the same competition the previous year.

Bulgarian side Ludogorets finished bottom of their Europa League group last season but have Champions League group experience in 2014-15 and 2016-17.

If Rangers lose to Malmo they will drop into the Europa League play-offs and take on the winners of the tie between Kairat Almaty of Kazakhstan or Armenian side Alashkert. The losers of that tie will take on Linfield or Fola Esch in the Conference League.

Hibernian will face a trip to Dublin against Bohemians or Greece to take on PAOK if they get past Rijeka in the Conference League.

Aberdeen will take on Cypriots Limassol or Qarabag of Azerbaijan if they beat Breidablik.

Shamrock Rovers will take on Cypriots Omonia or Flora Tallinn if they beat KF Teuta, while Dundalk’s reward for beating Vitesse would be a play-off against Anderlecht or Lac of Albania.

The New Saints, who are the Conference League top scorers with 13 goals, will face CSKA Sofia or Osijek if they can get past Viktoria Plzen.

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