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Fortress Park Hall the key to TNS boss

Sport | Published:

Manager Craig Harrison hopes The New Saints' impregnable home form can help carve a first-leg advantage in tonight's Champions League clash with Videoton.

After brushing aside Faroe Islanders B36 Torshavn 4-1 (6-2 on aggregate), the Saints are in confident mood.

They now prepare for a sterner second qualifying round tie against the Hungarians, which starts on home turf on 7pm.

Park Hall has become a fortress for TNS, where they are unbeaten since November 2012, while Harrison himself has not lost a Champions League tie at the venue.

He said: "We have not lost at home in over two-and-a-half years and in the last 18 games we have only failed to score once, so we enjoy playing here.

"There was a great atmosphere the other night with almost 1,200 in the ground, and hopefully it will be the same tonight.

"We've had two great results to win both home and away for the first time in the Champions League, and confidence is high.

"With no disrespect to B36, we expect a tougher game against Videoton and we won't be resting on our laurels."

The Saints are happy to be at home for the first leg, as it allowed them more time on the training pitch and to study video footage.

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The Hungarians have a new manager at the helm in former French international Bernard Casoni, who took over at the start of this season.

Their most successful season came in 1984-85 when they defeated Manchester United en route to the final of the UEFA Cup where they lost to Real Madrid.

Harrison believes his side have every chance but he may consider changes, saying: "I picked the same 11 for the first two games and had the same bench.

"The lads who played did well, but that's not to say I won't change a few things.

"With two Champions League games already under our belts, I feel we're in a better position now to compete than if we were just coming in at this stage."

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