St Patricks Athletic will be looking to overturn a first league one goal deficit when they welcome IBV to Richmond Park on Thursday night (Kick off 7.45pm)
The Icelandic side hold a slender lead heading into the game thanks to a 50th penalty converted by Andri Ólafsson and despite a trip to Kazakhstan awaiting the winners Pats will be hoping to advance.
Mahon, who is taking charge of his first European game at Richmond Park, will be hoping that St Pat’s recent home record in Europe will be enough to see his side through.
Pats have beaten JFK Olimps (Latvia), Elfsborg (Sweden) and Krylia Sovetov (Russia) in recent seasons as well as drawing with Odense (Denmark) and Valletta FC (Malta).
Pats will have to win without Dave Mulcahy who suffered a calf strain in the 1-0 defeat to Shamrock Rovers and is a major doubt however Derek Pender and Stephen Bradley should be fit despite niggling injuries.
Danny North who was struggling heading into last week’s game and failed to finish the match will be hoping he can score the goals that fire Pats into the next round. The English born striker has impressed this season up front.
Speaking ahead of the game, Mahon told Stpatsfc.com “Our opponents are a good team and people should be under no illusions about that. We will have to be at our very best to beat them but that’s what we want to do because we intend on staying in this competition.
“From what I’ve seen of them I know that we can create chances against them. What we have to be careful of though, is that we don’t concede the away goal.
“While we will create chances we would have to have a lot of good spells in the game in order to score three goals and that will be very, very difficult against this side.
“Even though the traveling in the next round wouldn’t be ideal it’s important for us to stay in this competition for as long as we possibly can.
“It’s great experience for the players and myself and it’s a good opportunity to pit your wits against coaches and players from different countries with different ideas.
“If we get a result tomorrow night we won’t care where we have to travel so the focus is on getting through this round.
“It will be my first match managing St Pats in Europe at home and it’s an important occasion for me and the players.
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