The exciting names waiting for Celtic, Rangers, St Johnstone, Aberdeen and Hibs in Europe

Scotland will five European entrants next season. Picture: SNSScotland will five European entrants next season. Picture: SNS
Scotland will five European entrants next season. Picture: SNS
A look at how European qualifying is shaping up for Scotland's five entrants.


The Scottish champions are in a far more advantageous position than Celtic have been in recent years. They enter the Champions League qualifying stage in the third round of the champions path, meaning they are just two ties away from the lucrative group stage.

They will be seeded for the first tie but their possible opponents won’t become clear until the second qualifying round is completed.

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If the games go the way of the seeds in the second round, some of the names who could be on the other side of the draw include Ludogorets Razgrad, Malmo, Cluj and Sheriff Tiraspol.

Rangers are set to be unseeded in the play-off round where they could face Slavia Prague, foes from the Europa League, Dinamo Zagreb, who start in the first qualifying round, Greek giants Olympiacos or Red Bull Salzburg who are the top seeds of the entire champions path.

If Steven Gerrard’s men lose in the third round they enter the Europa League play-off stage. Lose in the Champions League play-off stage and they will drop into the Europa League groups.


While the short-term future of the Parkhead club is far from certain with regards to the next permanent manager and the make-up of next season’s squad, the team’s path to the Champions League group stages is clear.

Entering the league path at the second qualifying round, Celtic are seeded but they will still face a tricky test to advance. Their possible opponents are one of: Turkish giants Galatasaray, Danish runners-up FC Midtjylland or Rapid Vienna of Austria.

If [insert manager’s name] side do advance across two legs, they will once again be seeded in the third qualifying round. Even still, they could play Genk of Belgium or Spartak Moscow. Dutch giants PSV and Sparta Prague are also possible opponents if they come through their second qualifying round tie.

Come the play-off stage, Celtic won't be seeded. They could meet one of the teams mentioned or Benfica or Shakhtar Donetsk.

If Celtic do come unstuck in one of their ties and lose, they will have the safety net of the Europa League.

St Johnstone

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The Scottish Cup (and Betfred Cup) winners enter the third qualifying round of the Europa League. There is no doubt about it, the Perth Saints face a tasty tie with teams dropping from Champions League qualifying.

Callum Davidson’s men will come up against one of: Sparta Prague, PSV, Galatasaray, FC Midtjylland or Rapid Vienna.

Cause an upset and they will reach the play-off where more teams dropping from the Champions League enter, as well as the likes of AZ and Fenerbache.

If Saints suffer defeat in either round they will drop into the Uefa Conference League play-off stage or group stage depending on when they exit the Europa League.

Hibernian and Aberdeen

The duo will be Scotland’s first entrants in the new competition. The pair will be seeded as they join the competition in the second qualifying round.

Hibs and Aberdeen could face any number of teams but the ones which may stand out: Aris Thessaloniki, Ashdod, Vålerenga, Shakhter Karagandy, Śląsk Wrocław and NSÍ Runavík.

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