JOHN DISNEY is ready to cap a memorable week by helping Gap Connah’s Quay progress to the third qualifying round.
Disney, pictured below, missed last week’s 1-0 defeat to Vojvodina in Serbia due to suspension, but that didn’t stop him from extending his summer to remember.
The former Chester man played a key role in both legs of Nomads’ 1-0 aggregate success over Stabaek in the first qualifying round.
And despite missing the first-leg of the clash with Vojvodina, Disney enjoyed a week to cherish as he got engaged to fiancee Rebecca Wragg after moving into their new home together.
With things going well off the pitch, Disney is now determined to help Nomads continue their European adventure in Rhyl this evening.
Vojvodina head to north Wales tonight looking to defend their slender advantage, but Disney and his team mates are ready to gain revenge in style.
“We are definitely looking to win,” declared Disney, who is expected to return to the defensive midfield role he performed impressively against Stabaek.
“We are currently the only Welsh team still in Europe and we want to continue that by reaching the next round.
“We want to continue making history for the club. The Europa League success has been a big stepping stone but we don’t want it to end now.”
Disney’s Europa League campaign was interrupted when he was shown a second yellow card - and subsequent red - for cooling down after being substituted in the second-leg of the clash with Stabaek.
Asked about the incident, Disney said: “I think the picture tells the whole story.
“It was ridiculous. I’d not heard anything like it before.
“I think it could have been handled by telling me to sit down because I wasn’t causing any trouble.
“I was gutted to get shown a red card because I wanted to help the lads in Serbia.”
Disney found a way of watching the first-leg of the second qualifying round tie with Vojvodina via the internet.
It was tough to watch for Disney, who explained: “I watched it at home and it was painful.
“The lads did brilliantly. The shape of the team and the way they defended was superb and obviously John Danby had a good game in goal.
“The solidarity of the team meant we can go into the second-leg with everything to play for.
“It was an unlucky goal to concede, it has taken a deflection and gone in, but like I say, we are still in the game.
“We also know where we can hurt Vojvodina. We’ve been preparing for games absolutely brilliantly and we know we can cause them some problems.”
Disney will be key to Nomads’ victory chances as he performs a defensive shield with the likes of Danny Harrison and James Owen.
Deployed at right-back for a large part of his playing career, Disney is enjoying the change to mix it with Europe’s best midfielders.
“I played in midfield as a youngster,” said Disney.
“I went on to play most of my football in the National League and National League North at right-back, but Wes (Baynes) has been great in that position since I signed in January.
“It was all about finding a place in the team for me and I am enjoying playing in midfield.
“You get to see more of the ball and playing alongside someone of Danny Harrison’s experience helps.”
Elsewhere in the competition tonight, Cliftonville, who warmed up for Europe with a friendly against Nomads, head to AEK Larnaka looking to overturn a 3-2 deficit.
Also in action are Neil Lennon’s Hibs, who trail Brondby 1-0 heading into the second-leg in Denmark.
Dylan McGeouch is adamant Hibs can overcome Brondby in Denmark on Thursday and set up a glamour Europa League showdown with Bundesliga side Hertha Berlin.
“I definitely think we can turn it round over there,” said the midfielder.
“The boys certainly believe we can do it. I think everybody coming away from the game felt we could be a match for them over two legs.
“I thought we were quite unlucky. Their goal was a mistake by the goalkeeper, but we shrugged it off, played good football and had a good few chances and got some good balls into the box.”
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