David Cotterill wants to make his experience count as Barry Town United look to overcome NSI Runavik this evening (6.00).
The Cymru Premier side must win to progress from a tricky tie out in the Faroe Islands to keep their Europa League campaign alive – and set-up a mouth-watering first qualifying round tie with Aberdeen in the process.
The 32 year-old has never played in the Europa League before but the 24-time capped former Wales international is likely to prove key to Barry Town’s chances of success.
“I’ve played at a very high level and represented Wales so hopefully that will bring a little bit of calmness to the group,” Cotterill told the club’s official media channel. “I’m looking forward to the game and hopefully my experience will help the lads.”
Cotterill was yet to sign for Barry Town when they last competed in Europe. That occasion, a year ago, was one of disappointment after they slumped to a 4-0 defeat against Cliftonville in Northern Ireland following a goalless first-leg draw.
Cotterill, who came out of retirement last January to join the club, says the squad are keen to make their mark this time around.
“Everyone’s looking forward to the game and the guys have played in Europe as well last season and have finished in the top-four the last two or three seasons as well will give them plenty of experience. Hopefully we can look to go one better and win this game.”
“I’m excited [to play in the Europa League for the first time], it’s great to be part of a group who’ve worked extremely hard over the years including the management staff. When you play international football, you’re coming up against the best players all over the country and all over the world, so in terms of that I don’t think there’ll be any players who I’ve not come up against before.
“Before the pandemic it was very frustrating, I played two or three games and felt my hamstring tight and then we had a couple of games called off, so it was a very stop-start situation which was frustrating as I wanted to get going. I feel that I’m in a lot better condition physically coming into these games – we’ve all been training extremely hard, we’re a close knit-group and I’m looking forward to it,” he said.
“I want to put my mark on the team and help the team but the most important thing is not what I’m doing, it’s about the team.”
Barry Town United are to stream the game live via their official Facebook page.