Legia v Dundalk background

Legia Warszawa are close to ending their 21-year wait for a return to the UEFA Champions League group stage as they welcome Dundalk leading 2-0 after their play-off opener.

Daryl Horgan (left) comes under pressure from Legia's Steeven Langil in the first leg
Daryl Horgan (left) comes under pressure from Legia's Steeven Langil in the first leg ©Getty Images

Legia Warszawa will look to build on their 2-0 first-leg win and secure a place in the UEFA Champions League group stage for the first time since 1995/96 when they host Dundalk in the final instalment of their play-off tie.

Previous meetings
Nemanja Nikolić's 56th-minute penalty, his fifth goal in this season's competition, was supplemented by substitute Aleksandar Prijovic at the death as Legia triumphed in Dublin on 17 August. The match was Dundalk's first competitive encounter with Polish opponents.

• Legia first faced an Irish club when they took on Dublin side Saint Patrick's Athletic in the 2014/15 UEFA Champions League second qualifying round; they drew 1-1 at home but recorded a 5-0 victory in the away leg.

Match background
• Dundalk made it through two rounds of a UEFA competition for the first time in reaching the play-offs, beating FH Hafnarfjördur and BATE Borisov.

• They are angling to become the first Irish team to grace the group stage of UEFA's top club competition, Shamrock Rovers having been the first League of Ireland outfit to feature in the UEFA Europa League group stage in 2011/12.

• Legia got past Zrinjski and Trenčín in the second and third qualifying rounds respectively.

• Legia lost to Steaua Bucureşti in their only previous UEFA Champions League play-off, in 2013/14.

Nemanja Nikolić scores from the spot in the first leg
Nemanja Nikolić scores from the spot in the first leg©Sportsfile

Team and coach links
• David McMillan has scored seven UEFA goals – more than all his Dundalk team-mates combined. Like most of the Dundalk players, he has a day job, working as an architect, as well as playing football.

• McMillan and Nikolić are the joint-top scorers in UEFA Champions League qualifying this term. Their five-goal tallies are matched by Andreas Cornelius (København) and Leigh Griffiths (Celtic).

Coach profiles
• Briefly a player with Dublin-based Home Farm, Dundalk boss Stephen Kenny is one of the most successful Irish managers of his age, having won one national title with Bohemians and two more in successive seasons with his current club. He also coached in Scotland with Dunfermline Athletic.

• Born in what is now Kosovo, former Albanian international Besnik Hasi made his name as a player in Belgium with Genk and Anderlecht, lifting four titles – before landing another as Anderlecht coach in 2013/14. He took charge of Legia after they clinched the 2015/16 Polish championship under Russian Stanislav Cherchesov.

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