Aron Wright - July 17, 2018
Dundalk vs FCI Levadia
UEFA Europa League First qualifying round
Date: Thursday, 19 July 2018
Kick-Off at 19:45 UK / 20:45 CET
Venue: Oriel Park, Dundalk.
Dylan Connolly brought Dundalk a decent advantage ahead of the rematch at Oriel Park bagging the only goal of the first leg seven days ago in Tallinn.
The Lilywhites thus have the pole position to move on to the second of four potential steps en route to the Europa League group stage.
Stephen Kenny and his troops were there two years ago when they enjoyed a shockingly deep run in the Champions League qualifications, but matching such success will require a huge dose of luck given the journey will be much tougher from round to round.
Last year’s Premier Division runners-up first need to confirm the victory from Tallinn on Thursday when they will be favourites to see off the Estonian opposition for the second time in a row.
That’s exactly what their bitter domestic rivals Cork City have done in the previous term of the competition, beating FCI Levadia on both occasions in the inaugural qualifying round.
The two teams are about to take on each other only for the second time in history on Thursday.
Their first ever meeting was an open affair which saw both sides miss decent chances.
Connolly led the game Dundalk’s way bagging the only goal of the match just after the interval.
Dundalk are doing very well in this term of Premier Division. They are on their best way to regain the crown from Cork City after beating the Rebel Army 2-1 three weeks ago.
The Lilywhites are now four pints clear at the top of the standings and they will generally come into the reverse fixture with FCI Levadia high on confidence after winning as many as 14 on the trot across competitions.
The visitors are currently on the break from domestic affairs as Estonian Meistriliiga is about to return to action next weekend after the summer break. The team led by Aleksandar Rogic sits at the third place after 18 rounds being three points shy of table-toppers Nomme Kalju.
The visitors will be forced to rick more here and it will be the music to the ears of Dundalk’s attacking line which should have much more space to strike from counters.
We see a pleasant evening for the hosts and we’ll back them to pick up the 15th consecutive victory at 1.45. The Lilywhites are also 2.30 to win by two or more goals difference.
Dundalk to win @ 1.45
Dundalk -1.5 handicap @ 2.30.