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A Kearney into the unknown.

Byline: AARON O'NEILL Maribor v Coleraine Europa League First qualifying round, 7.45pm

ORAN KEARNEY admits several things "need to fall into place" if Coleraine are to muster a famous result against NK Maribor in the Europa League this evening.

Last week's win over Sammarinese outfit La Fiorita - thanks to James McLaughlin's deft touch and finish - has sailed the Bannsiders into uncharted waters.

A win at the Stadion Ljudski would propel the Showgrounds club through two rounds of European competition for the first time ever.

History beckons and while manager Kearney is fully aware of the size of the challenge they face in Slovenia, he insists his players "have earned a crack at it."

"There are certain things that need to fall into place for us to get a result," he said.

"You would need them to not exactly be firing on all cylinders or be a bit rusty.

"Ideally, we will also have to play the game of our lives and put in a real top performance.

"It will be tough, but we have earned a crack at it."

Tonight's tie promises to be a special one for midfielder Stephen Lowry, who is poised to mark his 250th appearance for the Bannsiders.

Paying tribute to his influential number eight, Kearney said: "Stephen has been nothing short of superb during his two spells at the club and he is a manager's dream.

"He sets high standards in everything he does and has been one of our real stand-out performers last season and since the restart.

"He has really hit the ground running."

Coleraine will be without the services of lively winger Jamie Glackin, who is recovering from an arm injury.

Curtis Allen and Stephen Douglas also miss tonight's tie.


SETS HIGH STANDARDS Coleraine's Stephen Lowry

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Title Annotation:Sport
Author:AARON O'NEILL Maribor v Coleraine Europa League First qualifying round, 7.45pm
Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Aug 27, 2020
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