August 6, 2018 / 11:30 AM / 15 days ago

Celtic could face Malmo or Vidi FC in Champions League playoff round

(Reuters) - Celtic could face Sweden’s Malmo or Hungary’s Vidi FC for a place in the group stage of this season’s Champions League following the playoff draw on Monday.

FILE PHOTO - Soccer Football - Champions League - Second Qualifying Round First Leg - Celtic v Rosenborg - Celtic Park, Glasgow, Britain - July 25, 2018 Celtic’s Olivier Ntcham celebrates scoring their second goal REUTERS/Russell Cheyne

The Scottish champions must first beat Greek side AEK Athens over two legs of the third qualifying round starting on Wednesday.

The first leg of the playoffs will be held on Aug. 21-22 with the return legs on Aug. 28-29. Six places are up for grabs in the group stage of Europe’s premier club competition.

Dutch champions PSV Eindhoven meet Qarabag or BATE Borisov while former European champions Benfica of Portugal or Turkey’s Fenerbahce play PAOK or Spartak Moscow.

The six teams beaten in the playoffs will drop into the group stages of the second-tier Europa League.

FILE PHOTO - Soccer Football - Champions League - Second Qualifying Round First Leg - Celtic v Rosenborg - Celtic Park, Glasgow, Britain - July 25, 2018 Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers gestures to fans after the match REUTERS/Russell Cheyne

Draw:

Crvena Zvezda/Spartak Trnava v Red Bull Salzburg/Shkendija

Qarabag/BATE Borisov v PSV Eindhoven

Young Boys v FC Astana/Dinamo Zagreb

Malmo/Vidi FC v Celtic/AEK Athens

Benfica/Fenerbahce v PAOK/Spartak Moscow

Standard Liege/Ajax v Slavia Prague/Dynamo Kiev

Reporting by Shrivathsa Sridhar in Bengaluru, editing by Ed Osmond

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