After last Thursday’s thrilling first leg at Belle Vue, Prestatyn Town face a do-or-die situation in the Latvian city of Liepāja tonight – victory over FK Metalurgs will only do if they’re to progress any further in the Europa League.
At stake is a second qualifying round meeting with Croatian League side HNK Rijeka – but the Seasiders were dealt a blow by the news that star striker Lee Hunt had been ruled out with a hamstring injury after making his competitive return with Town last week. Tommy Holmes returns to take his place while Jason Price is still doubt having spent all of the 2-1 defeat at Rhyl on the subs bench.
Metalurgs are also in the middle of their league season and count as huge favourites to knock out Prestatyn and progress – but the Welsh Cup holders feel there is still a realistic chance of causing a shock, particularly after taking Andy Parkinson’s equaliser into account.
Coach Chris Hughes told the BBC Sport website: ”The game last week showed us we can compete with them and we have nothing to fear. For large parts of the game we thought we shaded it. We put them under lots of pressure for the last 20 minutes when they went down to 10 men and we changed out formation and had a go at them. We were a little unfortunate not to get the equalising goal to take into the second leg, but still the performance gives us plenty of confidence to go and give a good account of ourselves.”
Kick off at the Daugava Stadium in Liepāja is at 5pm BST – Airbus UK kick off an hour beforehand in Ventspils with a 1-1 draw in Wrexham leaving their chances of progress delicately poised. Meanwhile, Bala Town aim to make more history after their heroics at Belle Vue – the Lakesiders beat Levadia Tallinn 1-0 in the first leg – Romanian club CS Pandurii Targu Jiu await them if they can see off the Estonians tonight (5pm ko BST).