Derek McInnes reckons Rijeka were as good a side as any they have faced in his tenure as Aberdeen manager.
However, in that memorable Europa League tie four years ago, the Dons came through 5-2 on aggregate to reach the third qualifying round.
That included a superb 3-0 win away in Croatia in the first leg, a feat the Dons would love to repeat tomorrow night when they return to Rijeka.
Andy Considine, Peter Pawlett and Kenny McLean scored the goals that night and while the venue is different – Rijeka have moved to the Stadion Rujevica while the Stadion Kantrida is being rebuilt – Aberdeen will be looking for a similar outcome.
McInnes said: “When you look at the quality of their team and the quality of their home record, people would see that as a significant result. Some games you don’t need to win tactically – some games you’ve maybe got better players and go out and perform. But we won the game tactically that night and that was pleasing.
“Technically, they were as good as anything as we’d played against. Rijeka and Real Sociedad technically were two of the better teams, and I say that with some of the domestic teams we come up against.
“Tactically we had to be aware of their attacking threat. We lined up a totally different way to what we normally would in both games. The players worked at it and got their rewards. You’ve still got to see it through and execute it but we played very much on the counter-attack away from home.
“This is a different team, different players and a different manager. We’ve had them watched; they’re a bit more physical, rather than technical.”
The Dons made the third qualifying round in every season between 2014 and 2017, with last year’s first qualifying round defeat to Burnley the one exception.
McInnes added: “Any cup competition, it’s all about getting through. We expect tough challenges. In domestic cup competitions, the mindset is to get to the final and win it. To get to the group stages of the Europa League would be our final.
“It’s about working our way through the rounds and not get too far ahead of yourselves. If you do that in cup competitions, you’re liable to take a sore one.”