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Published: 15:36 | 19/6/17

Dundalk to face Rosenborg in Champions League


League of Ireland champions Dundalk will face Norway's champions Rosenborg in the second qualifying round of the Champions League.

The first leg will be played on the 11 or 12 July in Ireland, with the return leg a week later in Norway.

Dundalk manager Stephen Kenny previously managed Bohemians against Rosenborg in the 2003 Champions League, with the Norwegians winning the tie 5-0 on aggregate.

Unseeded Dundalk, who made the final play-off round last season, avoided two sides they played last year, Iceland's FH and Poland's Legia Warsaw, and Swedish side Malmo in Friday's draw in Switzerland.

Lilywhites' goalkeeper Gary Rogers says last season's impressive performances in Europe have helped create a no-fear culture in the Oriel Park dressing room.

 "You have to approach every game with the attitude that you're capable of winning it," he told the Irish Mirror.

"Our success from last year will give everyone confidence from knowing we're capable of doing it in Europe at the highest level.

"Rosenborg are a tough outfit. They are Norwegian champions and it's a massive challenge.

"But how many massive challenges did we have last year and we managed to overcome a lot of them."

Dundalk hope the FAI will allow them to move their League of Ireland game against Bohemians at Dalymount Park on 7 July to allow his side the maximum preparation time for their first-leg tie.

Scottish champions Celtic will play Northern Ireland's Linfield or San Marino's SP La Fiorita in their Champions League second qualifying round.

If Linfield progress, the first leg will be played in Belfast on the week of the 12 July, at the height of the Orange Order marches to celebrate "the Glorious 12th".

When Shelbourne were drawn to play Rangers in the 1998 Uefa Cup, the first leg was moved from Tolka Park to Prenton Park, home of Tranmere Rovers, amid fears of sectarian violence following the Drumcree stand-off in Portadown.

Linfield chairman Roy McGivern has already begun talks with the Police Service of Northern Ireland [PRSI] to ensure a potential game against Celtic could go ahead on 11 July.

"From a football point of view it is fantastic," McGivern told the Irish Sun.

"I had lunch with Celtic's representatives after the draw and we've had initial discussions about the games.

"Obviously we have a two-legged tie against La Fiorita first and we won't get ahead of ourselves, but with the second qualifying round so soon after, it is vital be start thinking about arrangements now for a potential blockbuster tie.

"We've also had a chat with Uefa and we had ruled out July 12 for obvious reasons, purely from a practical point of view.

"Our preference is to play the home leg first, for financial reasons that's obvious the best thing for us.

"At this stage the first leg would be on July 11, potentially with an early kick-off but there are discussions going on at home now with the PSNI to see how that would be managed.

"That is the preferred option at the moment but there have been no discussions about switching the games at all."

First qualifying round draw (27/28 June & 4/5 July)

Víkingur (FRO) v Trepça '89 (KOS)

Hibernians (MLT) v FCI Tallinn (EST)

Alashkert (ARM) v FC Santa Coloma (AND)

The New Saints (WAL) v Europa (GIB)

Linfield (NIR) v La Fiorita (SMR)

Second qualifying round draw (11/12 & 18/19 July)

APOEL (CYP) v Dudelange (LUX)

Žalgiris (LTU) v Ludogorets Razgrad (BUL)

Qarabag (AZE) v Samtredia (GEO)

Partizan (SRB) v Buducnost Podgorica (MNE)

Hibernians (MLT)/FCI Tallinn (EST) v Salzburg (AUT)

Sheriff Tiraspol (MDA) v Kukës (ALB)

Astana (KAZ) v Spartaks Jurmala (LVA)

BATE Borisov (BLR) v Alashkert (ARM)/FC Santa Coloma (AND)

Žilina (SVK) v København (DEN)

Hapoel Beer-Sheva (ISR) v Honvéd (HUN)

Rijeka (CRO) v The New Saints (WAL)/Europa (GIB)

Malmö (SWE) v Vardar (MKD)

Zrinjski (BIH) v Maribor (SVN)

Dundalk (IRL) v Rosenborg (NOR)

FH Hafnarfjördur (ISL) v Víkingur (FRO)/Trepça '89 (KOS)

Linfield (NIR)/La Fiorita (SMR) v Celtic (SCO)

IFK Mariehamn (FIN) v Legia Warszawa (POL)

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