TNS Face Impossible Task After Second Half Collapse in Macedonia
Prior to their first leg last week The New Saints had hoped to go to Macedonia to face Shkendija and give themselves a chance of having something to play for in the second leg. Unfortunately for them, after a collapse in the second half of that game they have nothing but pride to play for when they take to the field on Tuesday for their second leg. After going in at half time 2-0 down, things weren't brilliant but they were manageable at that stage, but things took a turn for the worse in the second half.
Three goals in 13 minutes for the Macedonian side put the game to bet, and left TNS facing a five goal deficit coming into the second game. Their hopes of making it through to the next round are dashed, and they face a monumental task on Tuesday night. Instead, they will aim to restore a little pride and try and win the game to show that Welsh football deserves its continuing place at this level, and that they are capable of playing against other European teams in the Champions League.
While the rest of Europe is still recovering from the World Cup and not even thinking about the Champions League, small teams like TNS and Shkendija have a lot to play for at this time of year. Reaching the next round of a competition like this would be seen as huge for both of them, especially TNS, who would love nothing more than to showcase Welsh football in front of an even bigger audience should they be given the chance to do so.
TNS 23/10 to Restore Pride and Win Second Leg
While the overall tie appears to be over with, TNS will still want to put on a show and try and win the game in front of their home crowd. They are 23/10 to win the game on Tuesday night, and it is expected that they will play a strong team to try and do so, with pride on the line. They will want to show the rest of Europe they are much better than what we saw in the first leg, and while Shkendija may come over and take this game easily, resting a few players, that may be the slight edge that TNS need to win this. At 20/21 Shkendija are once again favourites for the tie, but their chances depend on how seriously they take the game and if they rest any players.
Things haven't gone to plan so far, but TNS will be loking to restore some pride and win the second leg on Tuesday night.