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Two-goal hero Paul Heatley is determined to keep European run going

Paul Heatley celebrates after scoring against Ekranas on Thursday with manager Stephen Baxter

Paul Heatley celebrates after scoring against Ekranas on Thursday with manager Stephen Baxter

  • by Gareth Fullerton
 

Two-goal hero Paul Heatley hopes Crusaders can continue sending shockwaves throughout Europe.

The Crues booked their place in the second qualifying round of the Europa League with a 5-2 aggregate win over Lithuanian outfit FK Ekranas.

Heatley bagged two goals in Thursday’s 2-1 second leg victory which ensured their safe passage to the next stage where they will meet Swedish side IF Brommapojkarna.

It is the first time in Crusaders’ history that they have progressed in Europe – the success coming at the 14th attempt.

Stephen Baxter’s heroes will travel to the Tele2 Arena in Stockholm for the first leg against Brommapojkarna next Thursday.

It will be a stern test against the Swedish full-timers, who are struggling in their domestic league with just one win in 13 games this season.

“Thursday was brilliant – creating a piece of history for Crusaders,” Heatley said.

“It was a great moment for everyone associated with the club, and we deserved the 5-2 aggregate win.

“But we don’t want it to finish here. We are determined to put in another big performance against Brommapojkarna and try and cause another surprise.

“Why not try and create more history? Why not target qualification for the third qualifying round?

“That has to be our aim now. It’s a big motivation and everyone can’t wait.”

 

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