Linfield returned to Belfast and lick their European wounds, but there is no point in feeling sorry for yourself.
As you progress in Europe, the tasks can become more difficult – no one said it would be easy.
Sometimes there was an abyss in the classroom and Bodo/Glimt were an unstoppable force.
Even with a 1-0 draw in the first leg in Belfast, the Blues needed to put in a great performance to have any chance of winning, but things didn’t go well when they were thrashed 8-0 in Norway.
David Healy’s team must nurture their wounded pride and take on Swiss side Zurich in the third qualifying round of the Europa League.
The first leg will take place on Thursday at Windsor Park and the second leg will take place on Thursday 11 August in Switzerland.
And the European dream is still alive for Premier League champions Danske Bank.
Win the next match and Healy’s men will advance to the Europa League Group Playoffs and are guaranteed to qualify for the Europa Conference League group stage.
Lose and have a shootout in the Europa Conference League to advance to the group stage.
The prize is still ahead, so now is not the time to show a lack of courage or faith.
Anything worth having usually has to be earned, and Zurich will also be a formidable opponent.
Any team that brings the Azerbaijani club Qarabag to two matches in extra time deserves respect.
Zurich drew 2-2 at home with Qarabag after extra time on Wednesday night, while the Azerbaijani champions advanced to the next round with a 5-4 aggregate score.
Their home games are played at Letzigrund which reaches 26,000 fans for League games. They won the Super League for the first time in 13 years last season and it was their 13th championship as Basel finished second.
Despite this success, coach Andre Breitenreiter left the club and took over the German Hoffenheim. Last month, former coach of the Austrian national team Franco Foda took a hot seat.
The 56-year-old German is an experienced manager who had success with Sturm Graz when he led them to the 2010-11 Bundesliga and the 2009-10 Austrian Cup.
The former FC Kaiserslautern manager took charge of the Austrian national team in 2017 but resigned in March this year after they failed to qualify for the World Cup after losing to Wales in Cardiff.
Players to look out for include Italy’s young striker Wilfried Gnonto. Earlier this year, he scored his first international goal in a 5-2 away defeat against Germany to become Italy’s youngest goalscorer at 18 years and 222 days, breaking Bruno Nicolet’s previous record since 1958.
Guinean Cheik Conde, who received his first call-up to the national team this year, is a hard-working 22-year-old midfielder.
As the Blues prepare to move forward in Europe, their former striker Callum Marshall is tipped for a bright future at West Ham.
The frontman scored his first West Ham hat-trick when the under-19s beat Crystal Palace 4-3 in the Next Generation Cup at Tottenham Hotspur Academy on Wednesday. Ahead of tomorrow’s final against the Spurs, young Hammers assistant coach Gerard Prenderville praised the 17-year-old after his second-half triple.
“He signed with the club in January and finished the season fantastically,” said Prenderville. “I thought it would be good for him to have a pre-season at the club and now that he has done that we can already see him getting even better.
“He helped us a lot in pre-season, scored a lot of goals in the Czech Republic and scored a hat-trick. Marshall, he’s a great guy, he works hard and is now reaping the rewards.”