Aron Wright - July 17, 2018
Hacken vs FK Liepaja
Europa League First qualifying round
Date: Thursday, 19 July 2018
Kick-Off at 18:00 UK/ 19:00 CET
Venue: Bravida Arena (Gothenburg).
Hacken left no doubts behind in the first leg and bagged a convincing 3-0 win to carry over to the second leg in front of their home crowd.
It will be a monumental task for the Latvian side FK Liepaja, whose wins at the competition in recent seasons came against teams from less competitive leagues like San Marino, Wales and Northern Ireland.
Liepaja’s previous visit to Sweden also ended in a defeat, when they lost to AIK 2-0 back in 2007/08 qualifiers of this competition.
The Latvian side is having a good campaign as their national championship is in progress and they are sitting on the 3rd spot of the domestic table.
FK Liepaja are pretty far from challenging the title as they are nine points behind RFS who is sitting on the top of the table, however they are in a very good position of securing another participation in this competition next season.
However, Liepaja have been in variable form lately as they booked three wins in the last five rounds. Tamaz Pertia’s side is the second most productive team in their league, while their defending could have been better.
After a three-week break in the domestic top flight, Hacken came back with a victory which is keeping them on the 8th spot. Although they are positioned in the middle of the table, they are not too far from the top five and the chance to challenge the Europa League spot once again.
But, in order to do that, Paulinho Guerreiro and the lads need to stabilize their form and do much better than the current two wins in the last five rounds.
The Swedish championship is more reputable one and they’ll have a very hard task of proceeding to the next round.
Hacken are favorites in this one without a doubt and will be aiming for a similar outing as in the reverse leg.
This is another Europa League qualifying fixture where two teams got to meet for the first time in their history.