Ryan Catney says Cliftonville are determined to show what they’re made of when they host Nordsjælland in the Europa League tomorrow night.
The First Qualifying Round first leg tie marks the Reds’ return to the continental stage after missing out last season and, having watched from the sidelines while his team mates booked a dramatic passport to Europe in May’s pulsating Play-Off defeat of Glentoran, fit-again Catney says everyone at Solitude is relishing their forthcoming battle with the Danish Superliga outfit.
“Nordsjælland will be a massive game,” he says.
“We’re back in Europe and we missed it last year. It’s great for the Club financially, plus some of the players are new here and haven’t played in Europe before.
“You always want to make the most of matches like this because you never know, it could be your only chance to play in Europe and you’ve just got to go and give a good account of yourself.”
Nordsjælland are strong favourites to book a Second Qualifying Round showdown with either AIK or Shamrock Rovers and, though realistic about Cliftonville’s prospects, Catney doesn’t believe anyone in home colours will be overawed by tomorrow night’s encounter.
“Obviously they are a better team,” he admits. “They play a better standard of football, they’re from a stronger League, they’re full-time and they’re fitter than us but we want to do the best we possibly can over the two legs. We’re going out to give a good account of ourselves and get the best result we can.”
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