Belfast Telegraph

New boy Andy Mitchell eyeing a perfect start with Crusaders

By Graham Luney

Andy Mitchell is hoping to become an instant hit at Crusaders on the European stage.

The Seaview new boy is yet to make his European bow at club level but he's no stranger to battles on foreign soil after progressing through Northern Ireland's youth ranks.

Stephen Baxter's Premiership champions will tackle Levadia Tallinn in the first qualifying round of the Champions League.

Since their formation in 1998, the Tallinn club have won nine Estonian titles but if Crusaders win over two legs they will face Albanian club KS Skenderbeu in the next qualifying round.

Former Rangers midfielder Mitchell cannot wait to get going in a Crusaders jersey and a Champions League adventure is a dream start to a new chapter in a career which kicked off when he went to Manchester City at the age of 13.

"I've played for Northern Ireland from under-16 to under-21 level so I have experience of playing in different countries but it would be great to get European experience with a club," said the 23-year-old. "It's Champions League football and Crusaders are on the football map.

"If we can do something special and share the headlines with Rory McIlroy and Carl Frampton it would be nice!"

Crusaders will host Levadia Tallinn at Seaview in the first leg on June 30 with the return clash in Estonia on July 7.

Mitchell added: "I always followed the Irish League and it's great to see Crusaders winning the league. In my opinion they should have won more trophies as they are on a different level to the other teams."

Belfast Telegraph


From Belfast Telegraph