Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner. Facebook Messenger An icon of the facebook messenger app logo. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Facebook Messenger An icon of the Twitter app logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. WhatsApp Messenger An icon of the Whatsapp messenger app logo. Email An icon of an mail envelope. Copy link A decentered black square over a white square.

All we know after Aberdeen drawn against Eintracht Frankfurt, PAOK and HJK Helsinki in Europa Conference League group stage

Rivals profiled, fixture dates, away trip travel and accommodation details/prices investigated - and what the Dons stand to make from their Euro campaign.

The Europa Conference League trophy. Image: Shutterstock.
The Europa Conference League trophy. Image: Shutterstock.

Aberdeen will play Eintracht Frankfurt, PAOK and HJK Helsinki in the Europa Conference League group stage – and here’s everything we know about their rivals, dates and travel so far.

The Dons dropped into Uefa’s third-tier competition following Thursday’s Europa League play-off defeat to Swedish champions BK Hacken, little more than 12 hours before the group draws for both the Europa League and Conference League were made in Monaco at lunchtime on Friday.

Uefa ranking points dictated Barry Robson’s Reds were in pot four for the 32-team draw at the Grimaldi Forum, which was made up of 10 defeated sides from the Europa League play-offs (like the Dons) and 22 clubs who won through from the Conference League play-off round.

The Dons were paired with German Bundesliga side Frankfurt from pot one, Greece’s PAOK from pot two and Finland’s HJK from pot three to form group G.

The lowdown on the Reds’ group G rivals:

Eintracht Frankfurt (Germany)

Bundesliga side Frankfurt are the only club in group G who the Dons have met in a competitive European fixture before – Alex Ferguson’s Aberdeen exiting the Uefa Cup in the first round at the hands of the German side in 1979/80.

Frankfurt are also likely the strongest side in the competition’s group stage – and certainly have the most Uefa ranking points.

Last term, though they finished seventh in the Bundesliga, they also made it to the Champions League round of 16, having won the Europa League the season before (beating Rangers in the final).

Germany’s Mario Gotze hits the winner in 2014 World Cup final.

Their home ground, Deutsche Bank Park, has more than 50,000 seats, while their squad includes World Cup winning goal-scorer Mario Gotze, another Germany international of note in keeper Kevin Trapp, as well as skipper – and ex-Bayern Munich and Dortmund midfielder – Sebastian Rode.

Having come through the Conference League play-off round, Frankfurt are undefeated in two Bundesliga games so far this season.

PAOK (Greece)

PAOK – often referred to as PAOK Thessaloniki – reached the group stage by dismantling the Dons’ Premiership rivals Hearts 6-1 on aggregate in the play-off round, having already knocked out Beitar Jerusalem then Hadjuk Split.

Fourth in the Greek Super League last term and runners-up in the Greek Cup, as Romanian Razvan Lucescu took charge for a second spell, they have made a flawless start in their opening two league games of the new campaign.

Captain Vieirinha, 37, has loads of experience with the likes of Wolfsburg and more than 20 caps for the Portuguese national team, while another veteran, attacker Taison, 35, has more than 30 caps for Brazil and played for Shaktar Donetsk in the Champions League.

PAOK’s Taison (Right) and Hearts’ Nathaniel Atkinson fight for the ball on Thursday night. Image: Shutterstock.

Alongside Taison, Spanish forward Brandon also looked lively (and scored) in the Hearts tie, while Russian international midfielder Magomed Ozdoyev has played for Lokomotiv Moscow, Rubin Kazan and Zenit in his homeland.

PAOK were Conference League quarter-finalists two seasons ago, while they have been in the Europa League group stage (or further) multiple times in the past decade.

HJK Helsinki (Finland)

HJK are in the hunt to retain the Finnish Veikkausliga title in their 2023 (summer) season, and also won Finland’s League Cup.

They have claimed three consecutive league crowns in their homeland, and were also Conference League group participants in 2021/22, while taking part in the Europa League group stage last season.

In this season’s Champions League qualifying, they lost out in the second qualifying round to Norway’s Molde, before their Europa League bid was ended at the third qualifying round stage by Azerbaijan’s Qarabag – a side Aberdeen tangled with in 2021. HJK finally landed a Conference League group berth by defeating Romania’s Farul Constanta in the play-offs.

The HJK squad is mainly Finnish with a smattering of foreign players. Roope Riski is an experienced striker who has scored once every two games for the club, while Serbian Bojan Radulovic is Finnish football’s top marksman so far this year.

When are Aberdeen’s home and away Conference League group matches scheduled for?

Aberdeen will play each of their Europa Conference League group-mates home and away, with the matches on the Thursday nights of September 21, October 5, October 26, November 9, November 30 and December 14.

Aberdeen will start their Europa Conference League group matches with a trip to Germany to face Eintracht Frankfurt.

The Dons will head to the Deutsche Bank Park on Thursday September 21 with the match kicking off at 5.45pm.

One man who won’t be lining up for the star-studded German side against the Dons is French international Randal Kolo Muani who made a deadline day move to Paris St Germain for a reported £77million fee.

Barry Robson’s side will then host HJK Helsinki at Pittodrie on October 5 with an 8pm kick-off.

Aberdeen fans during the Europa League play-off match with BK Hacken at Pittodrie. Image: Shutterstock.

Another home match follows with Greek side PAOK visiting the Granite City on October 26. This game also kicks off at 8pm.

The Dons will head to Greece to meet PAOK, who knocked Hearts out of the competition, on November 9 with a 5.45pm start.

The Reds will complete their fixtures with an away match against HJK Helsinki on November 30 and a home match against group favourites Frankfurt on December 14 with both games kicking off at 5.45pm.

The Conference League group stage campaign will be Aberdeen’s first Euro groups adventure since the 2007/08 season, with supporters naturally excited by the opportunity to see their team play Continental opposition all the way up to Christmas.

A huge part of the excitement will be the prospect of following their team overseas – not just to watch the football, but the chance to experience a city they may not have visited before and, obviously, the opportunity to boot it up with their mates abroad.

How much flights and accommodation will be for Frankfurt, PAOK and HJK away games

Disclaimer: This section was written before we knew for certain which group games would fall where, and was simply an initial look to get a feel for departure/arrival airports, and flight and accommodation costs for fans keen on travelling to the matches.

In coming up with the options below, we followed some broad principles – looking for flights departing from as close to Aberdeen as possible (on a Tuesday before two potential away matchdays in late September, and late November/December), landing in the host cities, and with accommodation either next to the stadiums and/or in the centre of the host cities. Return flights were set to Friday, the day after the matches will be played.

Here’s what we found – though the rush to book once the games were confirmed will likely have changed things. So be quick!

Frankfurt – Flights: £400-£450 return in September. Aberdeen to Frankfurt with a connecting flight in Amsterdam. Options early, middle of the day and late both ways. For November/December, prices are closer to £300 (cheaper via Heathrow). Hotels: Plenty of options in the £40-£65-per-night-per-room range in September, then £50-£100 in November/December.

Thessaloniki – Flight: £300ish return in September, but £200ish if trip falls in November/December. All from Aberdeen to Thessaloniki with connecting flight in London, Dublin or other UK airport. Full day travel. Hotels: Plenty of accommodation in the £50-£75-per-night-per-room range in September and even more so in November/December.

Helsinki – Flight: £345-£475 return, depending where trip falls. Aberdeen to Helsinki Vantaa with stop in Bergen or Amsterdam. Hotels: Several options in the £100-£150-per-night-per-room bracket for September, but looking slightly cheaper (more in the £50-£100 range) if the match is in December.

Europa Conference League group win worth more than £400k to Dons

Aberdeen have received a boost of £2.55million just for qualifying for the Conference League group stage – the minimum they were guaranteed following last season’s third-place Premiership finish.

They will also receive a share of coefficient ranking and broadcast payments.

And should they pick up points during the six group games to come, they stand to make even more, with a group stage win worth £430,000 and a draw worth £140,000.

Aberdeen manager Barry Robson. Image: Shutterstock.

The top two teams from each group go through to the knock-out rounds – though group runners-up must tackle a preliminary knock-out tie against a third-placed side who drop down from the Europa League group stage.

The final of the 2023/24 Europa Conference League will take place on May 29 at the Agia Sophia Stadium in Athens, Greece – the 32,500-seater home ground of AEK Athens.