This weekend will mark the return of one of the most importants clubs in France, Racing Strasbourg, the Alsace region who were for years hungry of Ligue 1 action and now their dream has come true, Racing will open their campaign visiting Lyon with the base of the team who won the Ligue 2 but also with many new players.
In all their friendly matches they have recorded very good results and they are invict.
From the last time when they were in the 1st division until today a lot of things have changed, the classical opponents that Racing will face have now new stadiums and also many big world class stars but Racing is prepared for that, their main objetive is to maintain the category, to stay in Ligue 1 and then they will look to qualify to a European competition.
Historic moments has happened in this 3rd qualifying round stage of the UEFA Champions League because some modest teams have reached the playoffs stage for the first time in their history and also have recorded a milestone in the football history of their country as its the case of FC Astana.
Nice produced a massive shock by eliminating Ajax who were finalist last season in the UEFA Europa League and they have qualified for the first time in their history to the playoffs, the Champions League anthem will be heard in the Allianz Riviera for the first time since it was constructed some years ago.
With this qualification to the playoffs Nice continues their tradition of playing in the most important European club competition, they were 2 times quarterfinalists of this competitions almost 60 years ago.
What it is true is that for the 2nd season in a row Nice will play group stage of European football either Champions or Europa League.
Qarabag surprised everyone by reaching the playoffs defeating Sheriff Tiraspol who were also favorites and who reached the playoffs 2 times
Qarabag becomes the first club from Azerbaijan who reaches this stage for the first time in their history, they have been enjoying a notable run in European competitions since some seasons ago, last season they played the UEFA Europa League group stage