Aberdeen are in Croatia for their massive Europa League third qualifying round first leg match against Rijeka.

The Dons last faced them in 2015, prevailing with an excellent 3-0 win away from home. A 2-2 draw in the return leg at Pittodrie was enough for Derek McInnes’ men to win the tie overall.

Aberdeen beat Rijeka in their last tie. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

Now they’re set for a rematch. The Dons will be under no illusions though that this will be very tough test for them. If they want to get close to the Europa League group stages, a positive result is needed.

Here’s how we think Aberdeen will start the match.

The starting XI

Joe Lewis starts in goals. At right-back will be Shay Logan and on the other side will be Greg Leigh, who has impressed since arriving from NAC Breda.

Leigh has performed well since arriving at Pittodrie. (Photo by Angelo Blankespoor/Soccrates/Getty Images)

Scott McKenna has been in the news recently after handing in a transfer request. McInnes has confirmed he intends to play him, regardless of the request.

We think he’ll follow through on his word. McKenna will partner Andy Considine in the middle of defence, with both Mikey Devlin and Ash Taylor still missing through injury.

In midfield will be Funso Ojo and Lewis Ferguson. Playing in attacking midfield will be Jon Gallagher, who has been somewhat of a surprise package since arriving on loan from Atlanta United.

Gallagher will need to play need to perform against Rijeka if Aberdeen want any success. (Photo by Scott Baxter/Getty Images)

On the right and left wings will be Ryan Hedges and Niall McGinn. They’ll aim to provide service to man of the moment Sam Cosgrove. The striker is on fire, netting eight goals in his first five matches.

So in all there are two changes from the side that beat Hearts. A positive result for Aberdeen would do them the world of good for the return leg at Pittodrie next week.

Here’s our starting XI in list form.

GK- Joe Lewis

RB- Shay Logan

CB- Scott McKenna

CB- Andy Considine

LB- Greg Leigh

CM- Funso Ojo

CM- Lewis Ferguson

RM- Ryan Hedges

CAM- Jon Gallagher

LM- Niall McGinn

ST- Sam Cosgrove

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