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Mixed fortunes for Floriana and Marsaxlokk in UEFA Conference League qualifiers draw

Floriana were handed a favourable tie in the UEFA Conference League when they were drawn to face San Marino side Tre Penne but Marsaxlokk face a tougher challenge when they were drawn against FK Partizani, of Albania.

Floriana, who qualified for the UEFA club competition after finishing as runners-up in last season’s Premier League, will start as firm favourites to overcome Tre Penne, of San Marino.

The Greens should hold too much firepower for their San Marino opponents who have struggled in European football in recent years.

Tre Penne have only one win to show since making their UEFA club competition debut in 2010. They beat Armenian side Shirak 1-0 in the UEFA Champions League firstt qualifying round home leg in 2013 but still bowed out after losing the return leg 3-0.

Last season, Tre Penne were ousted from the Preliminary Round of the Champions League when they were beaten by Iceland’s Breidablik before coming up short against Latvia’s Valmiera in the UEFA Conference League second qualifying round.

On the other hand, Marsaxlokk face a more challenging tie against FK Partizani, of Albania.

FK Partizani have come agonisingly close to reaching the group stages of the UEFA Conference League last season.

In fact, the Albanians ousted Atletic Club D’Escaldes, of Andorra, in the second qualifying round and beat Latvia’s Valmiera in the next round.

In the play-off round, they faced Astana, of Kazakhstan, and were knocked out 2-1 on aggregate.

That was the second time that FK Partizani reached the play-off round of a UEFA club competition. In 2016, they reached that stage in the Europa League where Russian side Krasnodar knocked them out.

For Marsaxlokk, this will be their first participation in UEFA club competition after more than 10 years.

The first qualifying round of the UEFA Conference League will be played on July 11 and 18.

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