Aberdeen manager Derek McInnes believes his squad is far more robust as the Dons set their sights on competing on two fronts this month.
The Reds return to domestic duty on Saturday when Kilmarnock visit Pittodrie before travelling to Stavanger next week to face Viking FK in the second qualifying round of the Europa League.
The fight to reach to the group stages of European football has been an annual occurrence at Pittodrie and with a trip to Sporting Clube de Portugal awaiting the winners next week the path remains as tough as ever but the Dons boss believes his squad is equipped for the challenge ahead this month.
McInnes said: “Norway is the strongest league we could have played against in the second round and we’ll do more digging on them nearer the time.
“They won the cup and beat Molde recently so they are decent. They will be a capable side and a big performance will be needed.
“Last season in particular was a real challenge for us as we never got out the bit due to injuries and a lot of players needed to come out the team who couldn’t because they didn’t have the competition required.
“But we are far more robust in most areas of the pitch now.
“Dean Campbell can come in at midfielder, Ross McCrorie can challenge at centre half as well and I feel we can field any three central defenders and not be weaker.”
The Aberdeen manager has grown accustomed to rebuilding his squad every summer and this year has been no different.
It is a task which he believes he is difficult as it has ever been but he believes the opportunities offered by his club and the pathway to success elsewhere makes the Dons an attractive proposition for any player.
He said: “You think of the Scottish Cup final (in 2017) when we lost to Tom Rogic’s late goal that was the end of a team three or four years in the making. When you lose four or five of your starters every season it is difficult to replace them.
“You are losing them because they are going on to bigger and better things. You are not losing them because they are not any good.
“That is the challenge. Kenny McLean leaves and a year later he is earning £40,000 a week in the Premiership. Jonny Hayes left when he was coming into his peak, Niall McGinn left.
“Losing my captain Graeme Shinnie last year was a tough one as I felt we were going to keep him. Losing the player and the person was hard and we’ve had to shape players to compensate.
“My staff and I have to lead that and show players they can play 200 games for Aberdeen, gain experience and win medals then let them move on because you can’t keep good players forever.
“You can’t stand in their way.”