Date:Tuesday October 3 2006
So Group E it is with Feyenoord, Basle, Nancy and Wisla Krakow. You would expect us to finish in the top three perhaps behind Feyenoord who will undoubtedly be favourites for the group.
The Feyenoord fixture, away from home, will be a great chance for Brett Emerton to return to his former club. He will certainly be licking his lips at that prospect considering his early season form.
So we can assume Feyenoord are favourites and we are all aware of their capabilities, but what about the other sides, who will be the surprise package? John Williams has already identified Wisla as the 'dark horses` of the group and Basle are well known on these shores after they went so close last season against Middlesbrough. Least we forget Nancy, I am sure they anything but and won`t be a pushover.
However, there is plenty of room for optimism here for Rovers fan`s considering the top three go through. I would confidently place us in second spot as we are more than capable of getting results in the games against Basle, Wisla and Nancy and perhaps even Feyenoord who aren`t exactly flying in the Eredivise at the moment.
Nancy currently sit in third position in Lique 1 in France with 15 points from their 8 opening games and previously knocked Schalke out of the UEFA Cup. Wisla are third too in the Ekstraklasa with 17 points from 9 games, but are just a single point off the leaders. Basle are fifth with 13 points from their opening 9 games in the Swiss Super League. Finally, Feyenoord are ninth in the Eredivise with 10 points from 6 games.
So we can see these are teams of similar ilk, when comparing league positions, to Rovers. Everyone will fancy their chances, we just have to hope that we can continue to play good football and the experience in our squad will see us through.
John Williams certainly seems optimistic, he told Skysports: "Looking at it, with three to qualify we have to be optimistic. We`re determined to do well and the group gives us a chance.
"This competition is important to us. We`ve not had a good record, and it`s time to put that to rest. It`s about prestige for us."
Keep an eye out for individual team analysis, providing form, top players, results style of play amongst other things so at least we won`t go into this fixture unprepared.
Below is the full draw:
Paris St Germain
Hapoel Tel Aviv
Date:Tuesday October 3 2006
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