Birkirkara FC and FK Rudar Pljevlja are a step closer to the UEFA Champions League group stage after reaching the second qualifying round, where they will join 32 other European title winners.
Montenegrin champions Rudar face PFC Litex Lovech of Bulgaria after beating SP Tre Fiori 7-1 over two legs in the first qualifying round, while Maltese titleholders Birkirkara are up against Slovakian counterparts MŠK Žilina following a 7-3 aggregate victory over FC Santa Coloma. With two games down, Rudar and Birkirkara would need to negotiate a further 18 fixtures to defy the odds and reach the Wembley final next May.
Also seeking a place in the third qualifying round draw on 16 July are 2009/10 group-stage contenders Debreceni VSC from Hungary, who play FC Levadia Tallinn of Estonia. Czech representative AC Sparta Praha must overcome Latvia's SK Liepājas Metalurgs while Belarusian side FC BATE Borisov, who experienced the group stage two seasons ago, encounter Iceland's FH Hafnarfjördur and Norwegian champions Rosenborg BK take on Linfield FC from Northern Ireland.
The first legs will take place on 13 and 14 July with the returns the following week. The likes of four-time European Champion Clubs' Cup winners AFC Ajax, RSC Anderlecht and Celtic FC lie in wait in the third qualifying round.
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