Rangers discovered their opponents for the Europa League First Qualifying Round on Tuesday afternoon.
Well, sort of.
Steven Gerrard’s side will face either FC Prishtina of Kosovo or St Joseph’s of Gibraltar.
Those two teams have to meet in the two-legged preliminary round, with the winner earning a trip to Ibrox.
— UEFA Europa League (@EuropaLeague) June 18, 2019
Prishtina came second behind Feronikeli in the 2018/19 edition of the Kosovo Superliga [Soccerway]. In last season’s Europa League, they made it through to QR1, but lost on penalties to Fola Esch of Luxembourg. They play their home matches in the 13,500 capacity Fadil Vokrri Stadium, meaning there should be plenty of room for travelling Bears. Eros Grezda was on the Kosovan outfit’s books as a youth player before leaving in 2010.
‘The Saints’, as they are known, came third in the Gibraltar Premier Divison in order to qualify for Europe [Soccerway]. They were dumped out at the Preliminary stage last season by B36 Torshavn of the Faroe Islands. A small club, their usual home ground is listed as the 2000 capacity Victoria Stadium. It’s said to be a picturesque venue, but the bad news is that the pitch is artificial.
With a coefficient of 1.250 to St Joseph’s 0.800 [Kassiesa], Prishtina will be favourites to progress.
Based on their UEFA rankings, this is a kind draw for Rangers. However, that doesn’t mean all the fans are happy.
Plenty wanted a rematch with Progres Niederkorn – the previously unknown club who embarrassed Pedro Caixinha’s Gers in QR1 back in 2017.
Here’s a selection of reactions from Rangers fans:
Raging it’s not Progres or Cardiff Met Uni but still let’s give either one of these mobs a good tanking
— Joshua Fry (@Joshuafry2310) June 18, 2019
Nah, we want progres
Draw it again
— CJ (@Cjnovo992) June 18, 2019
We want Progres. Do the draw again
— Kyle Morrison 🇬🇧 (@KyleMo1872) June 18, 2019
— shug (@hughmiller2) June 18, 2019
Albania/Kosovo should be good the food and beers are amazing and it's hot
— bk (@bujarferizolli) June 18, 2019
— Graeme Davis (@GraemeDavis1872) June 18, 2019
A bye. Just like last year. Effectively pre season bounce games.
— Bruno (@daddybroon) June 18, 2019
tough one who ever we get, stevos boys better be ready, ainy no easy games in europe now….
— freealba (@like_en_ken) June 18, 2019