City cross Pennines for European tie

Manchester City have confirmed they will play the home leg in the first qualifying round of the UEFA Cup at Oakwell, the home of Barnsley.

The Premier League side approached Tykes officials last month about using Oakwell as an alternative venue for the match because of the time required for the City of Manchester Stadium pitch to recover from this summer’s events programme.

UEFA have now confirmed Oakwell meets their requirements and new City boss Mark Hughes will take charge of what could be his first competitive match in south Yorkshire.

The home leg of the first qualifying round will take place on July 16/17 or 30/31, depending on the draw which takes place on July 1.

Barnsley boss Simon Davey, who led his side to within two games of Europe themselves when they reached last season’s FA Cup semi-finals, told the club’s official website: “It’s a fantastic honour for the club to host this game.

“It promises to be a great night of European football and should give us something to aspire to in the years to come. It’s a great coup and, who knows, maybe we can take this club into its own European adventure one day.”

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