Baraclough looking forward to Molde test
Sligo Rovers Manager Ian Baraclough says his side are looking forward to an historical event at the Showgrounds tomorrow evening as the League of Ireland Champions go up against Tippeligaen Champions Molde FK. The game heralds Rovers' first ever venture into the UEFA Champions League in what will be one of the most memorable nights in the club's 85 year history.
Speaking to sligorovers.com having just completed his side's last training session before the game, Rovers boss Ian Baraclough commented that his side are well prepared for the visit of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's team. He said; "We've had a short space of time between the end of the Pat's game (Sunday) and that has dictated that we've had to cram quite a lot in. But we've made sure that the rest and the recovery is right and we've also made sure the players recovered properly and now we just look forward to and wait for the game."
Molde currently sit in tenth position in Norway's top division and Baraclough spoke about what he thinks a sold out Showgrounds crowd can expect from Solskjaer's side: "I've spoken to quite a few people about them and I have a few contacts in Norway. Having watched footage of their last few games, I know they're a team full of incisive players with good technical ability and they'll be strong on the ball."
Baraclough says although he his wary of the threat posed by Molde, there is no reason why the Bit o'Red can't spring a surprise on home turf: "We go into the game as underdogs but I don't mind that. We're not used to this feeling (of being underdogs) that's for sure. We tend to go into games expecting a win and maybe us not being the favourites may take the shackles off a little. I certainly feel as though we can be strong enough to come through this tie."
Ian has also called on his players to lead the club to only their second ever European win. He also commented that although seeing continental football at the Showgrounds has become the norm in recent seasons, now is the time to step up to the plate. He enthused: "This club has only ever picked up one European victory in its history and hopefully tomorrow we can double that. To get European football here in Sligo every year is great but you have to start putting some results together. It's something we as a group are focusing on and I don't see any reason why we can't progress if we all perform to our maximum capabilities."