Scot Alastair Reynolds insists Aberdeen face tough test against Apollon Limassol

Alastair Reynolds
Scot Alastair Reynolds, number 20, has been with Apollon Limassol for the past 10 years

Cyprus-based Scot Alastair Reynolds insists his Apollon Limassol side have the quality to trouble Aberdeen in their Europa League tie.

The Dons host Apollon on Thursday evening in the first leg of the third qualifying round.

And 20-year-old Reynolds, who has been with Apollon for 10 years, says the Pittodrie men are in for a tough test.

"We have players that can definitely hurt Aberdeen, but we need to take our chances," Reynolds told BBC Scotland.

"We have a very strong team, our centre-back Valentin Roberge was in the Sunderland team three years ago, so he was playing in the Premier League.

"We have Alex da Silva, a Brazilian who has had a very good career and is technically very good. Our striker Anton Maglica is also a very good player.

Valentin Roberge
Roberge, formerly of Sunderland, now plays for Apollon Limassol

"We need to go to Aberdeen and play our way, the way we have been playing the last couple of seasons.

"We like to build from the back, we're a possession-based team and when we don't have the ball we press to get it back. We like to keep the ball and try to make our opponents run."

Reynolds moved to Cyprus with his family after his father was posted there on military service. Having been with the Hibs Academy at the time, the Easter Road outfit helped him join up with Apollon and he signed a professional contract when he was 17.

The Scot has been immersed in Cypriot football and reckons the Dons will suffer if they take Apollon lightly.

"When I come home and mention Cypriot football, it's obviously really underrated," added Reynolds, who has had a loan spell at AO Ayia Napa and has featured 12 times for the Apollon first team.

'I could be back in Scotland sooner than I thought'

"No-one really knows about it but last year APOEL went to the last 32 [of the Europa League], beating Athletic Bilbao and eventually being knocked out by Anderlecht.

"We know Aberdeen are a very good side so it will be very difficult to get a result, but we are confident and hopefully we can do something in the tie."

Reynolds, a Rangers fan who was named after Ally McCoist, has been impressed with what he has seen from Aberdeen in recent seasons.

And he revealed he could be seeing them more often with a loan move to Scotland a possibility.

"I had confirmation that I can come for a loan so my agent has been looking back home and is speaking to a few clubs on my behalf," he added. "You never know, I could be back in Scotland sooner than I thought."

Aberdeen, who reached the third qualifying round by winning 2-0 in Bosnia over Siroki Brijeg for a 3-1 aggregate victory, go to Cyprus for the return leg on 3 August.

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