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How Dundalk could face Ajax in Europa League while Rangers drawn with scourge of Scottish sides

By Gareth Hanna

Dundalk could be set to host European giants Ajax in the third qualifying round of the Europa League - but they need two big results to go their way.

Stephen Kenny's side take on Cypriot side AEK Larnaca in the second qualifying round and must get past their opponents for the chance to take on Ajax or Sturm Graz.

But it's not the winners of that tie they will face, rather it's the losers as the Dutch team take on their Austrian opponents in the Champions League second qualifying round. The losers of that tie will drop into the Europa League to face either Dundalk or AEK Larnaca.

Dundalk previously played Ajax in 1987, losing 6-0 on aggregate in the European Cup Winners Cup.

Meanwhile, should Rangers safely get past Croatian side Osijek, they will take on either Chikhura Sachkhere (Georgia) or Maribor (Slovenia).

Maribor have proved the scourge of Scottish teams in recent European competition. The Slovenians knocked Rangers out in the Play Off stage in 2011, a year after seeing off Hibernian in qualifying. In 2016, they axed Aberdeen and in the Champions League, the saw Celtic off in 2014 qualification.

Ole Gunnar Solsjkaer's Molde, who beat Glenavon in the first qualifying round, could play Neil Lennon's Hibernian. Molde (NOR) / Laç (ALB) will take on Hibs or Asteras Tripolis (GRE).

The winners of Aberdeen's second qualifying round tie with Burnley will face Turkish team İstanbul Başakşehir.

Meanwhile, in the Champions Path, Celtic and Crusaders discovered their potential third qualifying round opponents.

Europa League third qualifying round draw in full

Champions Path - Champions League ties in bold. Losers will enter Europa League.

Ludogorets Razgrad (BUL)/Vidi (HUN) v Zrinjski (BIH)/Valletta (MLT)

Legia Warszawa (POL)/Spartak Trnava (SVK) v F91 Dudelange (LUX)/Drita (KOS)

Sutjeska (MNE)/Alashkert (ARM) v CFR Cluj (ROU) v Malmö (SWE)

Olimpija Ljubljana (SVN) v Crusaders (NIR) v BATE Borisov (BLR)/HJK Helsinki (FIN)

Shkëndija (MKD)/Sheriff (MDA) v FC Santa Coloma (AND)/Valur Reykjavík (ISL)

Cork City (IRL) v Celtic (SCO)/Rosenborg (NOR)

Spartaks Jūrmala (LVA)/La Fiorita (SMR) v Red Star Belgrade (SRB)/Sūduva (LTU)

The New Saints (WAL)/Lincoln Red Imps (GIB) v Astana (KAZ)/Midtjylland (DEN)

Dinamo Zagreb (CRO)/Hapoel Beer-Sheva (ISR) v APOEL (CYP)/Flora Tallinn (EST)

Torpedo Kutaisi (GEO)/Víkingur (FRO) v Kukës (ALB)/Qarabağ (AZE)

Main Path - Champions League ties in bold. Losers will enter Europa League.

Tobol Kostanay (KAZ) or Pyunik (ARM) vs Maccabi Tel-Aviv (ISR) or Radnicki Niš (SRB)

Zorya Luhansk (UKR) vs Braga (POR)

Hibernian (SCO) or Asteras Tripolis (GRE) vs Molde (NOR) or Laç (ALB)

Djurgården (SWE) or Mariupol (UKR) vs Ventspils (LVA) or Bordeaux (FRA)

Dunajská Streda (SVK) or Dinamo Minsk (BLR) vs Zenit (RUS)

Hapoel Haifa (ISR) or FH Hafnarfjördur (ISL) vs Atalanta (ITA) or Sarajevo (BIH)

Hajduk Split (CRO) or Slavia Sofia (BUL) vs Rudar Velenje (SVN) or FCSB (ROU)

CSKA-Sofia (BUL) or Admira Wacker Mödling (AUT) vs Stjarnan (ISL) or København (DEN)

Ajax (NED) or Sturm Graz (AUT) vs Dundalk (IRL) or AEK Larnaca (CYP)

Genk (BEL) or Fola Esch (LUX) vs Shakhtyor Soligorsk (BLR) or Lech Poznań (POL)

Sevilla (ESP) or Újpest (HUN) vs Žalgiris Vilnius (LTU) or Vaduz (LIE)

Olympiacos (GRE) vs Luzern (SUI)

St. Gallen (SUI) or Sarpsborg (NOR) vs HNK Rijeka (CRO)

Viitorul (ROU) or Vitesse (NED) vs PAOK (GRE) or Basel (SUI)

Sigma Olomouc (CZE) or Kairat Almaty (KAZ) or AZ Alkmaar (NED)

Osijek (CRO) or Rangers (SCO) vs Chikhura Sachkhere (GEO) or Maribor (SVN)

Istanbul Başakşehir (TUR) vs Aberdeen (SCO) or Burnley (ENG)

Nordsjælland (DEN) or AIK (SWE) vs Partizan (SRB) or Trakai (LTU)

Balzan (MLT) or Slovan Bratislava (SVK) vs Rapid Wien (AUT)

Górnik Zabrze (POL) or Trenčín (SVK) vs Feyenoord (NED)

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