The second qualifying round for the 2022-23 Champions League campaign will continue this week with Maribor set to welcome Sheriff Tiraspol for their first leg encounter.
Both teams will be pushing to get things started with a strong performance in this one to provide themselves with the best possible start heading into the next match.
Maribor showcased great quality in the first qualifying round as they proved to be resilient defensively in order to secure their place in this stage of the competition.
The Slovenian team were drawn against Soligorsk in that round, and they did not concede a goal in either game, which is something that will have brought plenty of confidence to the squad.
The first leg of that round was one that Maribor played in front of their own fans, which led to a goalless draw, but they followed that up with a dominant 2-0 victory to give themselves a chance of qualifying for the competition.
It was a brace from loanee Roko Baturina that secured their passage into this match, as he is currently playing for the club from Ferencvaros.
Maribor did not kickstart the defense of their Slovenian top-flight title following that victory though as they were beaten in the opening day of the season which they will be hoping to respond to this time around.
The visitors were able to make history in the Champions League last season by being the only Moldovan team in history to qualify from the group stages of the competition, which they will be aiming to prove was not a fluke.
They were able to pick up seven points during that campaign, showcasing the qualities that they possessed as a squad overall.
Sheriff Tiraspol reached this stage of the qualification process by knocking out Zrinjski in the first round, but it was two closely fought encounters that got them to that point.
Much like their opponents on midweek the first leg of that round saw a goalless draw take place, but they then picked up a tight 1-0 win in the following leg.
Tiraspol are yet to score a goal for themselves in the Champions League this year though as it was an own goal from Igor Savic that got them to this point, which they will now be hoping to improve upon.
Maribor Champions League form:
Sheriff Tiraspol Champions League form:
We say: Maribor 0-1 Sheriff Tiraspol
Both of the games that these two teams played in the previous round of the competition led to close encounters, and there is no reason that this one should be any different.
Neither team has been free-flowing with the goals yet, which will add pressure to the attacking players here, but the quality and European experience of the visitors could see them just edge things.