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Page last updated at 12:22 GMT, Friday, 17 July 2009 13:22 UK

Fulham face Lithuanians or Finns

Europa League

Fulham have been drawn against either FK Vetra of Lithuania or HJK Helsinki of Finland in the third qualifying round of the Europa League.

HJK have a 1-0 advantage over Vetra going into next week's second qualifying round second leg at home.

Fulham, seeded in Group 7, qualified for the competition, which replaces the Uefa Cup, by finishing seventh in last season's Premier League.

The Cottagers will be playing in Europe for the first time in seven years.

If HJK prevail over Vetra, it will mean a return to Finland for Fulham boss Roy Hodgson.

He was manager of the Finnish national team from August 2005 to November 2007.

The away leg will take place on Thursday, 30 July, with the home leg on Thursday, 6 August.


The winners advance to a play-off round when a further 41 teams enter.

That stage will include losing teams from the Champions League third qualifying round, plus domestic cup winners and other teams from Europe's strongest football nations.

A tournament format will see 48 teams play in 12 four-team groups between September and December before a knockout stage begins next February featuring additional teams from the Champions League group stage.

The final is scheduled to be played in Hamburg on 12 May.

Europa League third round qualifying ties involving British & Irish clubs:

Honka/Bangor City v Rosenborg/Qarabag

Falkirk/Vaduz v Slovan Liberec

St Patrick's/Valletta v Krylia Sovetov

CSKA Sofia v Skonto/Derry City

Steaua Bucharest/Ujpest v Flamurtari/Motherwell

Aberdeen v Sigma Olomouc/Fram Reykjavik

Rabotnicki/Crusaders v Odense

Vetra/HJK Helsinki v Fulham

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see also
Scots learn Euro League opponents
17 Jul 09 |  Europe
Azerbaijan trip on Bangor horizon
17 Jul 09 |  Europe
Derry in line for Bulgarian trip
17 Jul 09 |  Irish
Uefa trials new refereeing system
01 Jun 09 |  Europe
Hodgson keeps focus on top flight
25 May 09 |  Fulham
We deserve Euro spot - Schwarzer
20 May 09 |  Fulham

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